Jim Ward (body piercer) Founder of the Gauntlet
Western Oklahoma, United States
James Mark "Jim" Ward (born 1941) is an American
body piercer. In a 2004 documentary, entitled The Social History of Piercing,
MTV called him "the granddaddy of the modern body piercing
Ward was born in 1941 in Western Oklahoma and moved to
Colorado when he was eleven.In 1967, in New York he joined the New York
Motorbike Club, a gay S&M group, and experimented with nipple piercing.
During this time he also studied jewelry making. Ward then moved to Colorado,
where he joined the gay Rocky Mountaineer Motorcycle Club and further
experimented with piercing, genital in particular. In 1973, Ward moved to West
Hollywood (a gay village of Los Angeles) where he met Doug Malloy. Together
they developed the basic techniques and equipment that have become piercing
Ward pioneered many jewelry designs including the fixed bead
ring and internally threaded barbells. He was introduced to barbell style
jewelry by Horst Heinrich Streckenbach ("Tattoo Samy"), a tattooist
and piercer from Frankfurt, Germany, and his student Manfred "Tattoo"
Kohrs from Hanover, Germany.
"The first barbells I recall came from Germany. Doug
had made contact with Tattoo Samy, a tattooist and piercer from Frankfurt. Over
the years Samy came to the States a number of times and frequently showed up in
LA to visit Doug. On one of his first visits he showed us the barbell studs
that he used in some piercings. They were internally threaded, a feature that
made so much sense that I immediately set out to recreate them for my own
With funding from Malloy (derived from his work with the
Muzak corporation), Ward began using his home as a private piercing studio in
1975. Dubbing his studio the Gauntlet, he drew an initial clientele from a
mailing list provided by Doug and by running classified ads in local gay and
fetish publications. After three years of continued refinement with techniques
and equipment, Ward opened the Gauntlet as a commercial storefront operation in
West Hollywood on 17 November 1978. The establishment of this business —
considered the first of its type in the United States — was the beginning of
the body piercing industry.
In 1977, with the assistance of Malloy and Fakir Musafar,
Ward started the piercing magazine Piercing Fans International Quarterly
Chesler, Jessica (2003). The Social History of Piercing.
Ward, Jim (2004-10-24). "Who Is Jim Ward?".
Running the Gauntlet. BME. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
Ward, Jim (23 January 2004). "In the beginning there
was Gauntlet". Toronto: BMEZINE.COM. Retrieved 2010-11-09.
a b Brandon Voss (2007-10-09). "Father Knows
Best". The Advocate. Retrieved 2007-11-25
"Running the Gauntlet", cited in "In the
Flesh: Body Piercing as a Form of Commodity-Based Identity and Ritual Rite of
Passage," honors thesis by Amelia Guimarin, under the direction of Prof.
Teresa Caldiera, Anthropology, UC Irvine, 2005
Ferguson, Henry (January 2000). "Body piercing".
Student BMJ. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
Ward, Jim (2004-10-24). "The World’s First Piercing
Magazine". Running the Gauntlet. BME. Retrieved 2007-11-25.
(born Roland Loomis, August 10, 1930 in
Aberdeen, South Dakota) is considered the father of the modern primitive
movement. He has experimented on his own body with body modification
techniques such as body piercing, tightlacing, scarification, tattooing, and
suspension, and has documented, shared and taught others as part of his life's
work making him an underground icon in BDSM, kink and fetish communities.
At age four Musafar claimed to have experienced dreams of
past lives.He gave himself his first body piercing when he was twelve. He
performed the O-Kee-Pa suspension in 1966 or 1967. His first public appearance
as Musafar was at the First International Tattoo Convention in Reno, Nevada in
Musafar has documented and shared his explorations in
writing, speaking and teaching others "body play". In the early
1990s, Musafar appeared in mainstream media shows like NBC's Faith Daniels
Show, CBS's People Are Talking, CNN's Earth Matters and Discovery Channel's
(Beyond Bizarre). In 1998 Musafar produced documentary segments for London
Weekend Television's Southbank Show and Playboy Television's
"Sexcetera". In 2000, 2001 and 2003 he has appeared in documentaries
for The Learning Channel (Human Canvas Part I and Part II), TBS, FX Channel and
Discovery Channel plus a major appearance in the 2001 documentary film
"Modern Tribalism". In 2004 became a spokesperson for the National
Geographic Channel's Taboo (TV series) and has expressed "radical
contemporary" views on body rituals on the Travel Channel's "Eye of
the Beholder" series hosted by Serena Yang.
Musafar's writing and photography appears in Theater
Journal, Bizarre magazine (fetish and SM exploration), Skin Two and PFIQ
(Piercing Fan International Quarterly). He has lectured and performed at
London's Institute of Contemporary Arts (Rapture Series, 1995); Copenhagen's
International Seminar on BODY:Ritual-Manipulation (1995) and Lisbon, Portugal's
Festival Atlantico (1997). His photographic art was recently exhibited at the
Fahey/Klein Gallery in Los Angeles.
In February 1999, Musafar presented "My Reality, Your
Reality, Reality of Those you Treat" as an invitee to the annual
conference of the American College of Psychiatrists educating on body
modification and shamanism. His performance group performed
"Metamorphosis" at the 1999 Los Angeles Fetish Ball as well as for
close friend Annie Sprinkle's Benefit Show at the Cowell Theater in San
Francisco after her houseboat and archives were destroyed by fire.
Musafar continues to speak at colleges and universities and
to New Age and other special interest groups. Musafar is a Master Piercer and
shaman with over 40 years experience in the body arts. He is also the founder
and director of the School for Professional Body Piercing, the first in America.
Starting in 1948, he championed the ancient practices and modern techniques in
general use today and co-developed the established techniques of contemporary
body piercing. Musafar's Body Piercing and Branding Intensives school is
amongst the best in the world.
Musafar is featured in Modern Primitives, published by
RE/Search, and in the full length documentary Dances Sacred and Profane.
He also appears in the movie Modify.
Musafar was featured in the full length documentary film
about Charles Gatewood - Dances Sacred and Profane. The "sacred
dance" segment comprises Gatewood's conversations with Musafar, as they
talk about body manipulation as a spiritual practice, and "the historical
drive to find transcendence through pain". The last section of the film
follows Fakir's preparation and enactment of the "SunDance", a
spiritual ritual in which Musafar is suspended by steel hooks through his
Musafar's partner, artist, author and educator Cléo Dubois,
often travels, lectures and performs with him.
Fakir Musafar: Spirit + Flesh, Arena Editions,
Domination & submission (BDSM)
Risk-aware consensual kink
Safe, sane and consensual
All this information courtesy of wikipedia