The Clothed Avatar: Virtual Bodies in Latex Catsuits. Photo of Lizzy Bowman in a "moonbase alpha" black and white latex catsuit

The Clothed Avatar: Virtual Bodies in Latex Catsuits

The Clothed Avatar: Virtual Bodies in Latex Catsuits. Photo of Lizzy Bowman in a "moonbase alpha" black and white latex catsuit
The Clothed Avatar: Virtual Bodies in Latex Catsuits.
The Clothed Avatar. Virtual Bodies in latex catsuits. Gem from Tron reclines in a white catsuit.
Humans scanned and rasterized in the virtual world of Tron. Avatars longing to be made flesh. The virtual slams up against the corporeal.


The Catsuit.

When did fetish wear become mainstream clothing? Why do we see an endless stream of celebrities in skintight apparel once reserved for taboo fantasies? Is it a coincidence these erotic fashions are mainstream here in our 21st century moment? Or is it because of our 21st century moment?

The Clothed Avatar. Virtual bodies in latex catsuits. Montage of celebrities Miley Cyrus, Britney Spears, Cameron Diaz, Lady Gaga, Tyra Banks, Shania Twain, Rhiana, Katy Perry. In latex.


With every iPhone. With every Google glass. Inexorably. We are drawn into a fantasy now world. It also is a fetishistic world. But a very different fetish. Cyborg fetish. Our technology seems to suggest that we are leaving the corporeal body behind. We obsess over this technology. We lust for it. We can’t get it fast enough.

But we are afraid of it.

The clothed avatar. Virtual bodies in latex catsuits. Poster from Tomb Raider featuring Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft in a silver catsuit.
In Tomb Raider the circle of fetish and fantasy is complete. Angelina Jolie, a physical person, a “fleshvatar” if you will, pretends to be Lara Croft, an avatar in a catsuit.
Like Eve and that impossible apple we fear that the technology of our desire is also the technology of our destruction. We long to lose ourselves in an orgy of technology. Yet we simultaneously hunger to define our individual bodies. Through hours at the gym. Through pec and breast and butt implants. Through injections of every kind. More and more we immerse in the vortex of technology. More and more we crave the touch of corporeality.

No wonder fetish wear is now day wear.

Plastic Reality

Where can the clothed body be experienced at its most dramatic? In the clothed avatar. In more virtual worlds than can ever be counted we upload ourselves, like Flynn in Tron, into worlds of pixels and polygons and avatar bodies. At the nexus of high tech and high touch is the clothed avatar body. As in RL, the VR avatar longs for the sensuality of shiny, instantiated, corporeal clothing. Clothing that makes the paradoxical “physical” presence of a “virtual” body tactile and real.

Is an avatar in a catsuit any more of a fantasy than a fleshvatar in a catsuit?

The Clothed Avatar. Virtual bodies in latex catsuits. Series of 4 images of Lizzy Bowman transitioning from "wholesome" cheerleader to "goth girl" in pale makeup and jet-black hair.
For The Clothed Avatar I am transitioning my cheerleader avatar to a latex-clad, goth-complected, denizen of an opium den in virtual Amsterdam. Progression: Dye hair black. Apply very pale foundation. Extreme blush. Extreme eyeliner. The longest possible lashes. The reddest possible lips.

The clothed avatar. Lizzy Bowman before.
The Clothed Avatar. Lizzy Bowman after.

The Clothed Avatar

Today RL and VR are both filled with fetish fashion. With shiny plastic clothing. With latex catsuits. IRL we find designers like Syren, Ectomorph, Bondinage, Catfish Clothing, Tatjana Warnecke, Mother of London and others. In VR the names are different but the aesthetics map back and forth. In VR we experience designers like Madame Couturier, Elixir, Jackie Graves, Eclectic Randomness, Powers of Creation and others.

Here then is my latex catsuit fashion show on the catwalk of a virtual opium dream. Join me…

The clothed avatar. Lizzy Bowman in goth makup and a latex catsuit smokes opium at Trilby Minotaur's opium den in virtual Amsterdam.
My transformation to pale white skin under shiny black rubber complete, I head down to Trilby Minotaur’s opium den in virtual Amsterdam only to discover just how low my tolerance for opium is. I’m an avatar down a rabbit hole. A traveler in a dream. An adventurer on an unknown journey.


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Humane Fetish

• No fur.
• Cruelty free.

Stocking Info

The roles of Syren, Ectomorph & Naucler were played by Powers of Creation
Powers of Creation

The role of Bondinage was played by Hugo’s Design
Hugo’s Design

The role of Catfish Clothing was played by Eclectic Randomness
Catfish Clothing
Eclectic Randomness

The role of Rebel NYC was played by Dance Island; the role of Lust Designs was played by Kayliwulf Kingdom
Rebel NYC
Dance Island
Lust Designs
Kayliwulf Kingdom

The role of Tatjana Warnecke was played by Jackie Graves
Tatjana Warnecke
Jackie Graves

The role of Mother of London was played by Elixir
Mother of London

The role of Kaori’s Latex Dreams was played by Madame Couturier
Kaori’s Latex Dreams
Madame Couturier

I try to use as many Ben Nye products as possible when I have these occasional makeup orgies. The guy invented pretty much everything. I try to honor that. And not to be bratty, but hair this long and full can be a lot of work. Embracing volume without turning into a rat’s nest is a project! Of course I only let José Eber touch my hair.
The role of Ben Nye was played by Eloh Eliot; the role of José Eber was played by Carina Larsen.
Ben Nye
Eloh Eliot
José Eber
Carina Larsen

The Clothed Avatar. Lizzy Bowman in a laced catsuit floats in a dark pool of water.
I grew up in Friday Harbor, WA, and went to school at UBC Vancouver where I received a BSN in 2003. Now I'm a nurse at Children & Women's Health Center of BC. I wish I could tell you I went clubbing every night after work, but those days are pretty much behind me. My boyfriend is a bit of a gamer, but I'm not fond of battles & killing stuff, so I rarely join him. Sometimes I play Second Life instead: it's fun to unleash my inner cheerleader! :)

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