But some even better news is that the new-style Heavy Rubber mag unveiled by Czernich last month (in print form only — no digital version this time) should have a much broader appeal than its predecessor.
Fans of Marquis, for example, will find plenty to their tastes in this Heavy Rubber reboot. And its emphasis on cutting edge latex fashion and latex clothing as sexy wearable art will surely attract more female readers.
Numbered 37 to continue the sequence from the last HR published in early 2016, the 132-page reboot, complete with redesigned logo, is stuffed with beautifully printed, high quality imagery from many of the genre’s most accomplished photographers.
The overall effect is that of a fetish photo-book in magazine form. “It’s what people now seem to want from a printed product — a permanent record of creativity rather than a medium for news,” Peter observes.
The ‘latex as art’ message is clearly signalled by the choice of cover image for the new edition: a composite shot by Czernich featuring Ukrainian model Julee Reutova in an elaborate catsuit ensemble from Tokyo label Kurage.
And the theme is reinforced inside by the inclusion of features on other great exponents of the decorative genre such as Russia’s Andromeda Latex and the USA’s ExxEss Latex, famed for its collaborations with British artist Catasta Charisma, aka Mr ExxEss UK.
As you’ll probably have realised by now, while the content of the revamped mag is still rubber-heavy, there’s not quite as much actual heavy rubber as there used to be.
But for the reboot’s chances of sustainability in the long term, it’s good business sense for it to be a bit less niche. Latex — popular though it may seem to be in the world of celebrity videos — is niche enough already.
You may be wondering how Peter Czernich ended up with Heavy Rubber back under his control and being printed again in Germany. After all, the rights to the title went to America with the sale of Marquis to US businessman C Michael Martell a couple of years ago.
As Peter notes in the editorial introduction to his relaunch issue, when Mike bought the Marquis business, the plan was to transform the flagship title into a newsstand-friendly magazine that would bring fetish and BDSM coverage to a wider audience.
Peter was invited to stay on as editorial consultant, and Heavy Rubber was supposed to continue publication under the new regime. But after a promising start for the new US publishing operation and one new issue of HR, things started to go less smoothly than expected.
Eventually, in late 2017, Mike decided to put the whole US Marquis operation on hold, so that he could go back temporarily to running his other business (live event production) fulltime.
As Heavy Rubber had lain dormant since publication of issue 36 in early 2016, Peter suggested that Mike allow him to publish it again himself “so the magazine would not die”.
And, says Peter, “Michael Martell agreed and generously returned the rights to me.”
Consequently, anyone looking for evidence that the Heavy Rubber reboot by Czernich signifies a falling-out between the two men is likely to be disappointed.
When I contacted Mike Martell for comment, he told me: “I’m unsure when Marquis will move forward again. But it is by no means forgotten.”
At the same time, he was effusive in his support for the Heavy Rubber reboot under Peter’s control, saying:
“I was very happy to see that Peter was reinvigorated about the scene and back with a full interest after his last book. I think he had some regret about retiring when he did.
“Peter has been such a big part of the fetish scene. His work over decades has inspired so many. He deserves to be able to direct his original creations as much as he wants for as long as he is able to.
“We’ve both invested dramatically in Marquis and that’s not going to go away any time soon. But Heavy Rubber is once again all his own…”
And it certainly looks like Peter has had a ball creating the relaunch issue.
Working with graphic designer David Kirchgässner, he has divided the new magazine’s content into five categories: Latex Photos, Latex Fashion, Photo Stories, Fetish Models and Fetish Art.
Within these categories we find features ranging from a single page to a maximum of a dozen pages, with the emphasis massively on pictorial content, and text mostly in a very minor supporting role.
Maximum space for individual topics in the relaunch issue is devoted to two pictorials, both running to 12 pages.
One, Zlatexa, features the fetish scene’s favourite latex-loving contortionist Zlata, shot by young lensman Nikitzo. The other is devoted to Reflective Desire, the USA’s critically acclaimed rubberist photography project (subject of a previous Fetishistas cover story).
Photographer Nikitzo has been Zlata’s official photographer for a couple of years now, and his work here represents the best photos of Zlata in latex I’ve seen in a long time.
(Interestingly, the Zlata pictures also include a couple of this edition’s few exceptions to HR’s natural preference for latex, as confirmed in Czernich’s observation that there’s “hardly any leather, vinyl and plastic any more”. You might not immediately spot the interlopers but they are there!)
The very first major pictorial in the Heavy Rubber reboot is a Czernich shoot with his protegée Jess Janssen and puckish cutie MadMoiselle Peachy, an increasingly familiar sight at major fetish weekends these days.
This photo set provided us with the image for the banner over this article — also our April 2018 cover picture. And my thanks to Peter for recycling my High On Heels headline from an old issue of Skin Two. If it’s worth using once, it’s worth using again!
More traditional Heavy Rubber territory is explored in the six-page Freaksinside pictorial (which also includes one of the issue’s few texts longer than a couple of paragraphs or a few lines of credits).
Among the hooded women frolicking in this selection of shots from Matthias Kohl’s lair in the Canaries are well-known denizens of the London clubbing scene Amy Statik, Cynth Icorn and Slutty Affection. I am truly shocked.
In another six-pager, Phoebus, one of my favourite European photographers, provides the issue’s second photo story. Room Service features two popular Dutch models, Miss Mirjana and Lara Aimée, providing on-bed entertainment for a male voyeur who bears an uncanny resemblance to Mister Czernich.
Perennial Czernich favourite Bianca Beauchamp pops up, and indeed out, in an 11-page pictorial by longtime Latex Lair (and life) partner Martin Perreault.
For the record, it is this edition’s only substantial representation of the megaboob style that was previously endemic to the Marquis and Heavy Rubber aesthetic. Some may mourn its reduced presence here but others will perhaps not be too sad.
British latex sheet producer and clothing designer Rebecca Allsop models a selection of her own pretty latex styles in a seven-page pictorial devoted to her Yummy Gummy label, shot in suitably ‘fashiony’ style by Dan Thomas.
And America’s ExxEss Latex, who spent much of last year touring various European events with an amazingly loyal troupe of models acquired along the way, are the subject of another seven-pager with photos shot by Peter Czernich at Avantgardista, accompanied by the issue’s single most substantial chunk of text.
The final major feature in this Heavy Rubber reboot is devoted to the 3D fetish art of Nemain Ravenwood. So much fetish art is of low quality, and so much of the low quality stuff is now digitally generated, that it’s a delight to discover these criticisms don’t apply to Ravenwood. Her work is of a very high standard.
Breaking up these major pictorials you’ll also find numerous single pages or spreads covering brands such as Avantgardista, Bondinage, Chiracc, Dawnamatrix, Divamp, Katvoodoo, Lady Lucie, Sebastian Cauchos and VinNoir.
In addition there are pages devoted to models Hiro Kondo, July Shine, Mrs Brooks, Sabrina Violet and Shine Stephensson, and to artists Gernot, Manfred Holz and Numan.
It all adds up to a very impressive line-up for the Heavy Rubber reboot. But you don’t have to take my word for it. In the two galleries below, we reproduce 24 actual pages from the magazine so you can see for yourself!
Issue 37 of Heavy Rubber is available directly from the marquis.de web shop via the link below, price €19.95 (£15.30/$22.31 at time of writing) plus shipping.
StellaCurve.com: memberzone relaunch because of difficulties with payment provider — expected approximately mid-April.
PWC: “Stella is a project of mine; she booked a private shoot five years ago, and I immediately realised her talent. She has evolved amazingly ever since, has now been Mistress of Ceremonies at Fetish Evolution, will grace a flyer for Avant- gardista, and is postergirl for next year’s FE.”
LatexAngels.com: memberzone to follow next, launching in May.
PWC: “The idea was born during shooting with the Angel Twins. Now we skip the twins and use all kinds of models, preferably Russian, all of whom have a speciality — contortionism, pole-dancing, ballet, fire-eating, aerial etc — always in connection with latex.”
Trip to Tokyo, May 3-13: at invitation of Kurage, to display HR magazine at the Department-H party.
Next issue of Heavy Rubber (No38): to be published in June.
Start movie production on The Story of Stella Curve (working title).
PWC: “I plan a feature length film, shot professionally in 4K movie quality. We will follow Stella on her ventures over a year, and tell the story of a hairdresser from Nuremburg turning into a fetish starlet. Release due in spring 2019.”
October 2018: Appearance at Avantgardista with a Heavy Rubber lounge.
PWC: “And maybe a fashion show too (still to be decided). I am involved in the event, consulting where I can.”
Autumn 2018: New book — Fetish Photography II.
PWC: “I never meant to do a sequel to this one, but in the five years since its publication, so much great material has been shot that I just have to do it!”