Tapatio Cock and Strap-On Harnesses

Xandra Ibarra, Strap-On Harnesses (2015). Leather, Rubber, 9.5” x 16”, dimensions variable

“Ibarra’s first visual use of the Tapatío strap-on, a photograph from 2010, features a close-up of the bottle inserted in the harness, pointing downward, perhaps flaccid if a bottle like that could ever be. This original incarnation of the object gives detail to the mix of the humorous and the melancholic in Ibarra’s oeuvre. The objects were Ibarra’s early attempt to bring together the racialized and the pornographic, extending her queer Latinidad beyond the stage and into an exuberant play with objects. By placing the original bottle phalically upon the nondescript leather strap-on, this earlier work began a turn that Ibarra has practiced in her shift from burlesque to visual art. In this photograph, the Tapatío man’s half-smile and the blood red of the substance function through their seeming incongruity with the sexual object. At the same time, this earlier piece served as an early attempt to bring together the critical apparatus that she has since developed. Ibarra would go on to manipulate and create her own set of custom-made leather strap-ons, reminiscent of gun holsters, emblazoned, respectively, with the words La Chica Boom, Cucarachica, and XXX… At this point Ibarra also transformed the image of the charro to a facsimile of herself. This summation of objects narrates and conjoins the visceral elements present in them. It stretches literally from the smile and concentration on the mouth to the makeshift materiality of the faux phallus. It offers not a body without organs, but a jocular body that synthesizes and returns the contradictions of the Mexican body and her food, her mouth, her vagina, her spicy cock.” – Ivan Ramos

READ Spic(y) Appropriations:The Gustatory Aesthetics of Xandra Ibarra (aka La Chica Boom) by Ivan Ramos in ARARA- Art and Architecture in the Americas, Issue 12 (2016) 1-18.