Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Real Naturists of the Year 2009: ClothesFree International

The Asianaturist blog Real Naturist of the Year 2009 Award goes to ClothesFree International for being one of the strongest supporters of naturism on the Internet and in the world.
The organization is about promoting naturist values on many fronts: its web site http://www.clothesfree.com not only hosts an excellent forum, where you can find valuable information as well as share your ideas about all aspects of naturism, but also offers a wide range of resources and even a naturist television service. Unlike what you hear about from Russia or Canada, this is not newscasters stripping while pretending to be bringing the news, but a real news service about naturists by naturists for naturists. The team and forum are not afraid to call for campaigns if naturism comes under threat from its many opponents who cannot understand why living (almost) without textiles can be so liberating and yet so normal.
As you can find at http://www.clothesfree.com/aboutus.html, the award comes on the Oakhurst, California-based organization's 10th anniversary. Congratulations!
This award is not about money, there is not even a statue or a small memento involved, it's all about recognition. In 2007, our first Real Naturist of the Year Award went to a British couple who opened a naturist hotel on a Greek island, in 2008 we chose a Taiwanese writer who published a book about her naturist experiences in that - so far - non-naturist country.
ClothesFree International has won because it is all about real naturism, about emphasizing the positive aspects of the body, any body. Young, old, male, female. If you want to learn more about naturism, if you want to find practical information, it's all there on their web site.
Expect the announcement of our second award for this year, the Celebrity Naturist of the Year 2009 Award, by the end of the week.

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Coming Up: Naturists of the Year 2009

Remember Eva Mendes and Rosario Dawson?
They were my previous naturists of the year for my celebrity category anyway. At the end of each year I announce the winners of the Naturist of the Year Awards on this blog. This year I'll be a little bit later than usual, but do not despair.
I have divided the awards into two categories, the Celebrity Naturist of the Year and the Real Naturist of the Year. 'Real' because it's difficult to find a celebrity willing to admit he or she is really naturist. Their nude activities are often limited.
In 2007 I picked Eva Mendes for her love of nude gardening, in 2008 Rosario Dawson because she said her mother took her to a nude beach in New York when she was younger. I have no idea whether they still are real naturists, but they wouldn't appear on your average naturist beach now because all the paparazzi would follow them there as well.
My real naturists in 2007 were a British couple who left their comfortable lives behind to open a naturist hotel on a Greek island, that's my kind of dream, really. In 2008 I chose Taiwanese writer Pan Ying-hua for her book about her own naturist experiences, illustrated with numerous pictures of her and her friends putting naturism into practice on Taiwanese beaches. A courageous thing to do, both the beach naturism and the publishing of the book.
For this year - well, it wouldn't be a surprise if I revealed the winners today, but I have my mind already made up. Within the next few day, I will announce the winner/winners of the Real Naturist of the Year Award for 2009 first. It can be an individual, a couple or a group, but they must be involved in 'real' naturism. The winner of the Celebrity Naturist of the Year Award for 2009 will follow over the coming weekend, also on this blog. So keep looking. The answers will be there soon. The envelopes are ready.

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Thursday, December 17, 2009


With the New Year rapidly approaching, many people are looking for diaries, notebooks and calendars.
And for 2010, it looks like the calendar has become a major instrument to promote wholesome non-sexual nudity. We are almost being buried under an avalanche of nude calendars.
Only a few years ago, nude calendars were being thought of as pornography at worst or titillating art - think Pirelli - at best. But that view has now completely changed. Witness the success of the British film "Calendar Girls" about gardening ladies uncovering for a good cause. Not some silly fiction, but a true event. Since then, the number of projects deemed worthy of a nude calendar has grown exponentially.
Of course, the best ones would be those that actually serve a naturist purpose, such as saving a naturist beach from closure or from conversion to a 'textile' beach. Those calendars would receive my highest marks and my dollars, pounds, euros and yens.
But there are also a number of other causes now coming with nude calendar in tow. The most recent one to catch my attention, through a mention on a European newspaper site, was the one made by the Garrison Girls. They are a number of British soldiers' wives who are not total naturists, since they were not willing to have their faces or most of their bodies revealed in the calendar. Nevertheless, their effort is quite worthwhile and well done.
As I often mention on my blog when I'm not talking about naturism, it may not be naturism, but it still might be helpful in promoting acceptance of naturism and non-sexual nudity.
In closing, just a mention of their web site: http://www.garrisongirls.com

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Naturist Expo in the Netherlands

Taiwan has lots of exhibitions and fairs, for cars, for furniture, for computers and other electronics, and for travel. But the travel fairs will never feature or even mention the topic of naturism. What a contrast with Europe, where fairs in say, Belgium, or even Italy, a less naturism-friendly country, will have at least one naturist association supporting the cause.
Well, in the Netherlands, over the past three days, they even had a complete fair featuring nothing else but naturism and non-sexual nude leisure activities. The fair 'Naturisme Totaal' took place in the city of Utrecht, not in a small location hidden from view, but at the main exhibition hall in town.
According to media reports, 8,300 people visited the fair, which had a total of 140 stands. Of course you had the naturist associations and the naturist holiday resorts, but also health and spa clinics and saunas.
The Dutch naturist association says that out of the country's 16 million or so inhabitants, more than 2 million practice naturism in one form or another. That can go from just sunbathing naked in one's garden to actively participating in nude cruises, hikes, sport activities.
In other words, Asia still has a long way to go. If you want to know more about what a naturist fair is all about, visit their web site at www.naturismetotaal.nl, which also has pdf texts in English.

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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Nudity, Art and War

Kinmen, pronounced Jinmen and also known as Quemoy, is a small island off the coast of the Chinese province of Fujian that only makes the international press for its past as a frontline battle zone in the war between communist China and pro-Western Taiwan.
There are no naturist beaches, just like the rest of Taiwan, since public nudity is strictly forbidden, no matter the reason.
So when local filmmaker Tung Chen-liang went to show his documentary about the past wars on Kinmen to a government organization known as the Control Yuan, noone was expecting nudity.
But that was exactly what they got. In addition to pictures of the battle zone, and old martial propaganda songs from both sides - the songs in praise of Mao Zedong would never have been allowed in Taiwan until recently - just a couple of minutes into the movie, a completely naked young woman appeared, walking through a military graveyard, looking around, touching the graves. Taiwanese media reported there was full frontal nudity, though in good Taiwanese tradition, the TV stations covered the dangerous bits with a "mosaic" of pixillation. The picture that made the press was the one showing the woman lying naked next to the grave of a soldier.
Public reaction in Taiwan was mostly negative to neutral, with the director defending his choice of a naked woman as an attempt to the console the spirits of the war dead.
Regardless of this segment's real artistic value, the documentary, which is hardly likely to make it to Taiwanese TV in its present form, is the latest example of how nudity and art coexist in a difficult way in most Asian countries.

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