Stoya, Pop Star of Porn

The Internet explodes for Brooklyn's own Stoya, America's sweetheart of smut

The couple's fans—his call themselves "Deenagers," hers "Stoyanauts"—obsessively track their online activity for clues to the romance, trading leads in the comments sections, cracking the pet names, and tracking the paw prints. Last winter, Stoya's kitten, now named Dr. Squeak McQueen, Esq., showed up in Deen's Woodland Hills mansion, an event obsessively tweeted and Instagrammed by them both. In a photograph on Deen's blog, you can see another porn actress spreading her butt cheeks for his camera at his home—and Stoya's circus hoop hanging conspicuously in the background. When Deen was invited to speak to students at Pasadena City College in February, Stoya slipped into the back of the classroom, and blushed when the college students asked him how he acts when he meets girls in bars and he told them he's been thinking more and more about marriage. "When she came to my class unannounced, none of my male students recognized her in civilian attire," says PCC humanities instructor Hugo Schwyzer. But after class, a group of female students gravitated away from Deen's press conference and straight to Stoya. Schwyzer says one student told him, "She's, like, a sex icon and an ideal best friend."

Sometimes new acquaintances will lean over to her and say, "It's so nice to get to know the real Stoya." Then she has to inform them that whether they've seen her have sex on camera or teeter on platform heels at the AVN awards or bend her leg backward over her head on a circus hoop, they already do. When she arrives at the Smart Clothes Gallery on the Lower East Side in her white mink and black heels for the opening of Crabapple's political-art exhibit, "Shell Game," she tells the woman at the door simply, "I'm Stoya." The woman eyeballs the list. "Are you with the press?" she asks. "I'm going to be naked in that bathtub covered in money," Stoya replies, pointing to the tub parked by the window. She glides into the gallery and disappears into the basement to prepare for her next act.

An hour later, she emerges in a set of sparkling pasties, a silk bow-tied thong glued with yet more rhinestones, and a towering cotton-candy pink Marie Antoinette wig netted with Occupy Wall Street signs reading Shit is fucked up and bullshit and 99 percent and topped with a tiny re-creation of the 70-foot-tall red human figure installed in Zuccotti Park. Crabapple explains that she wanted to create "a tableau vivant of decadence."

Stoya: “I had no idea how judgy-wudgy the real world is.”
Clayton Cubitt; Fashion styling: René Garza; Makeup and Hair: Katie Wedlund
Stoya: “I had no idea how judgy-wudgy the real world is.”
Stoya playing Marie Antoinette at Molly Crabapple’s art opening
Jennifer Loeber
Stoya playing Marie Antoinette at Molly Crabapple’s art opening

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See More Stoya:
Burlesque With Stoya and Friends (NSFW) by Nate "Igor" Smith

Stoya steps into the tub and swims in a mass of green gauze ribbons and play money printed by Crabapple herself. Crabapple's $10,000 large-scale paintings of 2011's political uprisings surround her; a rented bodyguard named Mike watches nearby. As Stoya poses in the tub, a throng of Occupy activists, lefty journalists, Jezebel bloggers, and burlesque stars in blue latex take turns snapping Instagram shots with her. The stench of marijuana wafts across the gallery. The windows around the tub steam up. "This is the New York I was promised," Stoya says outside in her fur and heels, lighting one more Parliament. "I do think it's fitting I'm dressed as a Marie Antoinette, 'let them eat cake' sort of figure," she says. "Afterward, I'll go to the Box and perform for the bankers."

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