Friday, 26 March 2010

Venus in handcuffs: Jane Birkin

We recently found these splendid pictures of Jane Birkin handcuffed to a bed and felt that they were worth posting.  Jane Mallory Birkin was born in Marylebone, London on 14th December 1946 but she was educated on Triple P's favourite place in Britain, the Isle of Wight.

From 1965 until 1968 she was married to James Bond composer John Barry but in 1968, following small parts in the films Blow-Up (1965)  and Wonderwall (1968) she auditioned for a role in the French film Slogan (1968). She won the lead role even though she didn't speak French.

Her co-star in Slogan was Serge Gainsbourg with whom she started a relationship that ended in 1980, although, she never really got over him and her grief at his death in 1991, effectively ended her subsequent relationship with film director Jacques Doillon.

These days Jane Birkin is much better known in her adopted home of France than in Great Britain. It could be argued that, outside France, she has never really been famous for anything other than being famous. Who, these days, has actually seen let alone enjoyed, her breakthrough film Blow-Up (1966): a now very dated period piece?

She has made quite a few films, mostly forgettable and, as a singer has recorded over twenty equally forgettable albums. No, her fame, for most people, is largely based on her rather dreadful performance in Serge Gainsbourg's self-indulgent and pretentious record Je t'aime... moi non plus.

Originally this, so-called, erotic single had been written by Gainsbourg for his then girlfriend Brigitte Bardot but after Bardot married Gunther Sachs she asked Gainsbourg not to release the version they recorded together.

Instead he recorded it with new girlfriend Jane Birkin, who had just split from John Barry. In fact Bardot's version is better and sexier than Birkin's but it was the Birkin version that was released, got itself banned in many countries and, therefore, whose success was assured.

Some of these pictures first appeared in Lui magazine (for whom she posed several times) in December 1974 but have also appeared in Oui.

Some year's later Birkin and Bardot shared a bed in Roger Vadim's film Don Juan (1973), which was famous mainly for being Bardot's last film.  In fact, the stills from the film are more famous and more effective than the rather dull and faintly bewildering production they came from.

Still, this is not to deny Birkin's gorgeousness in her prime as these pictures show. The combination of the iron bed, the stockings and the handcuffs is quite potent. Agent Triple P had a bed just like this for his first year in college and soon discovered that at least one young lady enjoyed being tied to it with the knotted rope that served as a fire escape from our rooms!

This particular girl liked to be tied up and locked in Triple P's rooms whilst he was sent off in search of chocolate. The trick was to keep the girl guessing as to how long it would be before he returned. Somwhere between twenty minutes and half an hour usually ensured the right amount of simmering time.

By Pompeo Posar for Playboy 1970

Once, we had tied her to the foot of the bed so that she was on our red lino floor rather than on the matress. Unfortunately, after acquiring the requisite chocolate we ran into an old school friend and his parents. They invited Triple P to tea and we didn't feel able to tell them that we couldn't go because we had a girl tied to our bed. By the time Triple P returned to his room, quite some time later, said girl had made a puddle on the lino. We didn't bother to untie her.

These pictures, with the simple black background, are by Pompeo Posar and come from an earlier set which appeared in Playboy in November 1970.


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