London is a long way from the Gathering of the Juggalos, the Faygo-doused US festival for Insane Clown Posse fans, but any Juggalo would see a kindred spirit in Tuttii Fruittii and Toni Tits. Known jointly as the Jûngølā Klöwñz, the experimental art slash comedy duo take an LSD-laced approach to fashion and lifestyle: More is more, especially if it involves face paint, clown pants, and raver hair extensions.
Fruttii and Tits are the stars of Jûngølā Klöwñz, a project from photographer Poem Baker. Baker first encountered the pair when she was working on a project about London club kids and the underground performance art scene. "That's when I stumbled on [art collective] Haus of Sequana, which both Toni and Tuttii perform in. I was immediately struck by their characters and flair for style, and so I contacted them and they agreed to let me photograph them."
Baker photographed the pair over the space of a year, meeting up about once a month to shoot portraits. "I just wanted to show a kind of day in the life of the Jûngølā Klöwñz of London," she explained. "Hence the photos kind of having a running order, starting off with them being photographed in bed, then breakfast, getting dressed and then going to the market to go clothes shopping, Tutti working in her caravan hair salon, and so on."
The two self-described drag clowns hold down day jobs—Fruttii is a hair stylist while Tits is a video artist—though their life and art are pretty much indistinguishable. "Every day they dress up, put their makeup on," Baker explains. "It's not just an act for the camera; they look like this 24/7." It was the first time the self-taught photographer shot work in color, an experience that she describes as jumping "into the deep end."
In her last series, Hymns From the Bedroom, Baker photographed creative 20-somethings on the fringes of society: musicians, strippers, and performance artists. It wasn't so different going from drag queens and designers to two women who've renamed themselves Tuttii Fruittii and Toni Tits.
"London is my home and I love photographing all the wonderful colourful characters it [has]: the eccentrics, the artists, the crazies, the bohemians, and the crazy nutty woman who lives around the corner who owns 50 cats," she said. "Anyone who lives outside the box!"