Sonja Yakovleva’s (b. Potsdam, 1989; lives and works in Frankfurt am Main) silhouettes are informed by her sex-positive feminist views. They mix and match pornography with art-historical references, folkloristic motifs, fairy tales, and myths that have served to ingrain misogynistic, racist, and homophobic ideologies in the collective consciousness since the Middle Ages. The dissemination of such materials was facilitated by the paper cut, a medium that encouraged simplified graphical representations and was seen as domestic and appropriate for women. Yakovleva’s intentions in adopting it, however, are contrarian: her iridescent silhouettes grapple with women’s stories, precarious gray areas, power relations, representation, sexuality, and violence in novel ways.

Soaplands, the title of Sonja Yakovleva’s first monograph, is a nod to Japanese bathhouses where men receive personal care, massages, and sexual services. Most recently, a number of soaplands have opened that cater to women with male prostitutes. Similarly, in the paper cuts in the book, which were created between 2018 and 2023, women have seized sexual power and conquered the patriarchal system. Unchecked by shame, they use men as objects to satisfy their desires.

AUTHOR(S) Anna Gien, Sabrina Günther, Oliver Koerner von Gustorf, Egor Sofronov

DESIGN Correspondence

SIZE 25 x 32 cm



LANGUAGE(S) German, English 

ISBN 978-3-96912-145-0