No, the Trachtenstrip is not evil.
There are always a few people who feel insecure when something new tries to break up or complement the traditional. Tradition is not set in stone. It lives and develops just like everything else. Whether or not it is liked by the preservers of customs. Gustav Mahler once said that tradition is the propagation of fire, not the worship of ashes.
That is the spirit of the Trachtenstrip.
And let’s be honest: we don’t shred baby chicks and we don’t dump toxic waste in swimming lakes. We do not denunciate and defame. All we do is to present a piece of clothing, that is deeply rooted in Bavarian tradition, in an erotic and sensual way.
This can actually not hurt anyone, unless you feel deep inside offended through eroticism or sex. But both of them are absolutely natural things that are still wrongly stigmatized by religion and old, power-hungry people in our society today.
Interestingly, in connection with the Trachtenstrip, it are actually always older people, often with felt hats, chamois beards and unhealthy red cheeks, who think that they have to live up to their narrow view of morality and then put them on everyone else. The same applies to religion. Let us not get it wrong, everyone is allowed to have an imaginary friend to whom they pray in silent. But religion is like a penis. It’s nice to have one, but you don’t show it around everywhere without being asked.
A dirndl is not a burqa. It was designed to highlight the charms of its wearer. Nobody can seriously deny that. And all WE are doing now is to spin the concept a little further, to use the freedom that a modern and enlightened society enables us to have and to show and create beautiful things.
Of course, we also accept limits. We would never photograph a girl in a real traditional Bavarian Schalk dress. On the one hand nobody wants to see that anyway, on the other hand we respect “correct” costumes. To which the dirndl does not really belong. It used to be the clothes of the poor workers. An everyday item of clothing. And if you look at old recordings from times long past, its wearers used to be nowhere near as prude as we would like to make us believe today from felted mountain costume conservation bastions. You can see rows of ultra-short skirts and smiling faces.
And that’s where we end today with the Trachtenstrip. We celebrate the erotic, the beauty, the exuberance and freedom in the traditional.
And thereby build an unabashed bridge into the here and now.