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Jim Ward (body piercer) Founder of the Gauntlet

Born 1941

Western Oklahoma, United States

body piercer

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 movement.

Early years

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 industry standard.


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 customers."Jim Ward

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. MTV NEWS

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.


Fakir Musafar

(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 1977.


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 chest.

Musafar's partner, artist, author and educator Cléo Dubois, often travels, lectures and performs with him.[citation needed]


Fakir Musafar: Spirit + Flesh, Arena Editions,  

Domination & submission (BDSM)

Risk-aware consensual kink


Safe, sane and consensual

Sexual Fetishism

All this information courtesy of wikipedia  

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