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Main Content

The Story of Eros

The portrayal of sexuality in performance, art and the media


Thursday 26 February 2009


7pm - 10pm


Chapel Arts Centre, Main Studio, Chapel Arts, Lower Borough Walls, Bath, BA1 1QR, United Kingdom

Illustration: Carly G,

Scroll down for photos and participants' comments.

When does an erotic celebration of sexuality become exploitative or degrading? Who's being exploited? How have attitudes to the portrayal of sexuality changed over time and in different cultures? These are the questions we be explored within our usual mix of entertainment, great food, drink and panel-led discussion.

A Big Thank You To

Martin Tompkins for the photography, Alexia Tucker for production managing the event (among many other things), Jenna Graves of Snowglobe Events for promotion and consultancy support, Jonathan Turton-Smith for the lighting design, Chapel Arts for the space, SuperMegaActionPlus for the video animation, Thyme for the wonderful food and JR Ryan for the original concept and for technical support on the night.

On The Panel We Had

Dr. Sue Tate, feminist art historian, Senior Lecturer in Visual Culture with the UWE School of Creative Arts. Sue has recently contributed to the book "Sexual Politics of Desire and Belonging" with a chapter entitled 'Re-occupying the Erotic Body: The Paintings and "Performance" of Pauline Boty, British Pop Artist (1938-66)'. Pauline Boty is regarded as one of the founders of British Pop Art and she was one of the few women in the movement.

Wolfgang "Wolf" Kettler, a professional photographer based in Wiltshire.  Wolf is renowned for his exquisite portrait photography and his intimate lingerie and nude portraits.  Challenging conventional thinking, his photo sessions free the individual from the artificial restraints of looks and age.  Wolf's work has been published and exhibited internationally -

Spencer Maybe aka protest singer/songwriter Jake Wellington aka winner of Whoopee's Male Tournament of Tease burlesque artiste The Devil. Described by Plum Woodard for the UK Music Review as "a blistering example of whisky-neat talent, accomplished musicianship and fine arrangements, described by Time Out as "so sexy it hurts" and by The London Lite as "quite like Iggy Pop - macho and frisky, he's great".

The Entertainment

The Burlesque performers were Kitty Kane and Spencer Maybe (Spencer performed both as a musician and as burlesque striptease artist "The Devil"). We also had a wonderful turn from the Bath Spa String Quartet.


"Thanks so much for yet another great night on Thursday. Loved it all!
I can't tell you how much I appreciate Café of Ideas - always fascinating and highly enjoyable, a cherished opportunity to step out of the humdrum of daily issues and explore new ideas with interesting people in an open atmosphere. It has become a genuinely valued part of my life.
It's a great shame that you're finding it so hard to gain support from other Bath bodies: if anything puts soul in a city, it's Café of Ideas. 
I'll definitely be coming to the next event and absolutely promise to bring at least 2 people with me. I'll also be delighted to put flyers on cars/through doors/posters up etc. if you feel it would be of use.
Thanks again."

Karen Wilkinson
Full-time Mother, Café of Ideas Member, Founder of Present Sense



"It was really good and I'm so glad we went - a fabulously interesting discussion. I was thinking about it for days afterwards running through all the things I could have said! I definitely plan to be at the next one."

Nicola Donovan



"It was a very enjoyable evening, and stimulating to be there, with a good mix of discussion and great entertainment. I particularly enjoyed the contribution of Spencer Maybe - as well as being fabulous in performance, as a panel member he was incisive, intelligent and honest - adding a real richness to the event."

Marko Dutka


"I thought the event was very good and it certainly got people talking - and thinking. I was Interested to see how the conversation batted around in what turned out to be quite a complex and involved subject. I really enjoyed it."

Steve Cross
Business Manager, Café of Ideas member


"This event was great fun, very well executed, and the discussion worked well - an adventerous initiative on the part of Café of Ideas that Bath needs more of."

Johanne Grosvold


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