January 5th, 2012 / 3:11 pm

American Apparent

In 1912, Egon Schiele was imprisoned for 3 days in a town outside of Vienna for producing hundreds of pornographic (according to the State) drawings discovered in his residence after he was arrested for soliciting an underaged girl to model nude for him. It is unclear if he had sex with his models, though it is commonly accepted as so. Painters and their models; writing professors and their students; rock musicians and their groupies. There is simply something gross about this. It is degrading for both sides. Of his models, one Valerie Neuzil (17 at the time), moved him to such a degree that he moved in with her, though ended up marrying Edith Harms, while maintaining his relationship with the former, who left him when she found out about the marriage, duh. Egon had his child in the latter, then died three days after she did, she six months pregnant, both (or all three) from the Spanish flu. His drawings are commended for their deft vigorous hand, but criticized by some for their empty stylization. A hardcover monograph of his work will run you $120.00 at a museum store, though a cunning curator may wish to simply decide on their favorite image and buy the postcard for $2.00. In 2008, American Apparel owner and creator Dov Charney allegedly opened the door in his boxers, removed his member from a “non-outsourced vertically integrated” flap, and forced Irene Morales, one of his models, exactly on her 18th birthday, to perform fellatio on him on her knees at the doorway, then forced her to repeat the act many times, “nearly suffocating her in the process,” according to the $250,000,000 lawsuit Morales filed in 2011. In his defense, Charney said “some people love sluts,” after leaking consensual text messages from Morales. Only evidence is evident, all else is merely apparent. Many other suits ended up as settlements, as many other suits ended up at used-clothing stores. Walk down the cool college-y street of your city towards the bauhaus-y designed store front, and you will see a group of headless manikins standing there. Their pose should be of repose, a calm loyalty that only those without a mind would not mind.


  1. deadgod

      Is there hooking up which is not “gross”?

  2. mimi

      There is a giant-poster-size Am Appy ad of a young lass in her skivvies on the bus stop right outside Good Vibrations on San Pablo Ave. in Berkeley. Apt.  

      This post is good, Jimmy, I like your writing and the illustrations.

  3. lorian long

      this is rlly good, jimmy. i saw a schiele exhibit at ny’s moma last summer and i couldn’t tell the diff btwn the painted art-chix and the fleshed art-chix.

  4. Dalton

      I feel that your use of the word “gross” is irrational in the case of Schiele.  Schiele was 21 when he met Neuzil, and I can’t help but believe that this was not really the relationship you identify as “gross”.  Two young people enjoying each others company, what’s wrong with that?
      To be honest I thought this article (judging by the tagline and photo), would be about the blurred line between pornography and beauty/love in art, and I am little disappointed to see all you have done is rehashed already known facts.  Seems like a waste Jimmy.

  5. Brooks Sterritt

      “the door in his boxers”

  6. Jimmy Chen

      the sentence immediately preceding the one in which i used ‘gross’ incurred such attribution, not the sentences before it

  7. Daniel Bailey

      “hey, could you hook me up with one of those cookies? i love chocolate chip.”

  8. deadgod

      “Sure, Sweetiecorp was flogging them on tv just last week!”

  9. Jimmy Chen

      just realized there are two ways to read that, thanks

  10. Brooks Sterritt

      what if there are three?

  11. mimi

      i actually read it brooks’ way first

  12. Jonathan Safran Foer

      I don’t understand, aren’t you supposed to use a sheet with a hole in it?

  13. Erik Stinson

      this is an example of the new weird puritanism 

      ‘jimmy chen – celebrated celibate – elaborates on how sex makes him thinky’

  14. Thom May

      you can’t make me not like Schiele, it’s dumb to try.

  15. Jwegener


  16. Cvan

      I am the only one who thinks that American Apparel exists merely for the sake of Charney “picking up chicks”?  I can’t imagine how his facial hair wasn’t working to that effect before he started A.A.

  17. Cvan

      “New weird puritanism” is a good phrase.  One cannot be overtly heterosexually sexual anymore if a male, but anything else is touted and relished (female writers, GLBT, etc.).  Somehow only eunuchs like Tao Lin represent the few males who can acceptably write about sex for this crowd.

  18. s.c.u.b.a.

      I’m confused. Was there something heterosexual men have to say about sex that hasn’t already been said, repeatedly, in the last, say, three centuries?

  19. Cvan

      You don’t want to go down that road.  Is there anything, topic, style, or otherwise, that any writer can say that hasn’t been said repeatedly for the past three centuries?  The idiosyncratic touch is what keeps good writers writing, otherwise why bother.  So, I’m sorry but your point just doesn’t follow logically.

  20. Guestagain


  21. Cvan

      scuba, let me update my reply.  An illustrative source for “the redundancy of sex writing” is Rumpus.  The regugritative quality of Rumpus’ sex writing seems like a cow chewing, swallowing, and repeating the process, around once a week, just in print.  The same old cud over and over again.  Otherwise, your point is illogical.

  22. Jimmy Chen

      feel mildly hurt and irritated that 7 people (so far) ‘liked this’ inaccurate and unfounded proclamation of my sexual inactivity; feel like ‘getting back’ at stinson one day with a subtle comment directed at him, like something about taking twit pics of himself deeply enjoying the zipcode he’s in, and the drink he’s holding with the hand that isn’t holding the camera 

  23. M. Kitchell


  24. M. Kitchell

      yeah because there hasn’t been an overwhelming amount of str8 white males writing about sex since, oh, the dawn of the written word, god forbid we finally move into a realm of existence where it’s finally understood to be boring

  25. Shamalamadinginton

      “There is simply something gross about this. It is degrading for both sides.”–This from the dude who had that strange gynophobic Venn diagram?

  26. Jimmy Chen

      i’m only gynophobic when the lips talk back, you dingdong, you wanktoad

  27. deadgod


  28. NLY

      I should think a gynophobe would be the last person in the world to opt to make a Venn diagram, really.

  29. Cvan

      C’mon Kitchell, don’t get all “genealogy of morals.” 

  30. Cvan

      Jimmy, no one’s even started in on the fact of the $120 Schiele monograph.  If you’re paying that much, even in hc, considering there are multiple monographs on him at significantly less prices, then perhaps your prudery should not be questioned, but instead your deal-sniffin’.

  31. Shamalamadinginton

      Good thinking on your feet.