It's Still Raining Men - Celebrating 21 Years of the Weather Girls Seminal Gay Anthem

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It was 21 years ago today that the seminal gay anthem It's Raining Men first entered the UK charts. - British textile artist Mary-Clare Buckle has produced a witty, ironic take on the song's title in celebration of the anniversary. - It’s Raining Men can be seen - and bought as the original or a limited-edition giclée print - on her special website http://www.Its-Raining-Men.com, along with a selection of her other campy pop-inspired art. - The original and limited-edition prints of It's Raining Men and all Mary-Clare's other work can also be viewed at her studio-gallery in Dorset.

It was 21 years ago today (on March 10th 1984) that the seminal gay anthem It's Raining Men first entered the UK charts. The record stayed in the chart for 8 weeks, just missed the number 1 spot and introduced the Weather Girls - Martha Wash and Izora Rhodes Armstead - to a new mainstream audience. And, with its success, reconfirmed the cult gay status they had first acquired by their association with Sylvester - 70's San Franciso' s screaming drag disco queen in his sequined gowns and feathered boas.

And it was so popular that the Girls recut it as the winter camper Dear Santa Bring Me A Man This Christmas - although only real Weather Girls aficionados will remember that one.

The tune was covered by Geri Halliwell in 2003 but, even though the then-anorexic ex-Spice Girl belted it out, she could never hope to even come close to the big-black-chicks-in-your-face appeal of Martha and Izora.

So what's this mean for us today? There's no re-release; no glitzy, glam 21st birthday party.

But there is a new piece of art celebrating that iconic pink event from the 80's: 40-something, but still blond, bubbly and up-for-it, British textile artist Mary-Clare Buckle has produced a witty, ironic take on the song's title in celebration of that distant event. It's Raining Men places digital images on a paradoxically conventional textile landscape, to produce a large piece of felt textile art which confirms her position as a leading, innovative UK textile artist.

And it seems that the mainstream art world has recently taken on felt as a fashionable art medium, as seen in the - currently showing - Joseph Beuys exhibition at Tate Modern.

What inspires her? Mary-Clare explained: "Some of my main inspiration comes from pop culture and the clubbing scene: the outré fluorescent clothes (including my own favourite glowy hotpants and fluffies), glow-sticks, lasers, flashing coloured lights and the visuals projected onto screens behind the Djs. I also like to play around with - and subvert - cultural icons and song titles."

She continued: "I'd always loved the song, but wanted to put across the idea that if it rained men, you wouldn't necessarily get the type of men you wanted. So, as well as getting Tom Cruise, Rob Lowe and a bunch of hunky fashion models falling in your lap, you might also end up with the likes of Prince Charles, Stephen Byers and Dudley Moore!"

It’s Raining Men can be seen - and bought as the original or a limited-edition giclée print - on her special website http://www.Its-Raining-Men.com, along with a selection of her other campy pop-inspired art.

The artist can be contacted via the website, by email on mary-clare@its-raining-men.com, or by phone on 01305-871561 (outside the UK, 0044-1305-871561)

The original and limited-edition prints of It's Raining Men and all Mary-Clare's other work can also be viewed at her studio-gallery in the beautiful village of Abbotsbury, on the coast in West Dorset:

the gallery

13 Market Street

Abbotsbury

Dorset

DT3 4JR

See the contact page on http://www.Its-Raining-Men.com , for a map of how to get there.

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