What isn't porn?
installation; video grid + reflection area + educational zine, 2019
My work inserts itself into streams of feminist, ethical, independent and post- porn. These are all movements within the porn industry that have been in development since the 70s, mostly in Berlin, Prague, NYC and London – and have roots in feminist performance art. The idea within all of these movements is to flip the regulatory codes of mainstream porn and showcase all the sexual things that mainstream porn has deemed unworthy. So what I’m concentrating on in my artporn practice is to support arousal and sexual education through real and representative moving images of sexuality as well as ethical behind-the-scences work practices. When I showcasing my own sexuality as a queer, fat and hairy womxn and when I facilitate folx to showcase the parts of their sexualities that are deemed unworthy of celebration or pleasure, I am working towards changing the social scripts of sexiness, worthiness and pleasure.
For this project, I worked with 18 participants to develop and produce scenes that felt exciting, empowering and true to them. This installation has 3 parts to it.
The first part of this installation is a projection in half of the room: two walls are occupied by large scale grids of the video. I’ve been experimenting with this method of porn-screenings and the feedback has beenlovely. Outside of sexpositive communities, pornography can be difficult and complex to digest. This method of screening allows viewers to let their eyes wander to the video content that most interests them. It gives the viewer agency, variety and customized pleasure. The video includes content I filmed with 18 participants.The audio weaves between the clips, with laughter, playfulness and negotiations of consent and actions.
The second part of the install is a space for a guided audio reflection. In the audio, I ask a series of questions while prompting viewers to reflect on their relationship to porn with provided writing materials. I also invite a series of affirmations about the viewer’s relationship to sexual video and their bodies.
The third is a publication I’ve written that amalgamates my knowledge and the knowledge of many porn artists, sex workers and academic writers about pornography. This is available as an exhibition brochure.
There have been three installs and critique sessions for this work. Peers have shared that the two spaces accompanied by the publication has allowed them to feel comfortable exploring these ideas in a public andvulnerable space in a way that encourages conversation about sexual representation in pornography and all media.