Can losing one’s virginity be considered art? My experience was reminiscent of most contemporary art, anyway: confusing, devoid of meaning, and something no one anywhere would ever want to look at.
All art is masturbation unless you can convince someone else to get involved in it, whether as a spectator or a collaborator, which is something that 19-year-old London art student Clayton Pettet is taking quite literally. The Central Saint Martins student will ‘sacrifice his purity’ on the altar of art in January, in a piece that’s getting a lot of media attention because it challenges the ways we think about the concept of the virginal and also because of #hot #teen #art #gay #sex.
All jokes aside, Pettet brings up some interesting points in his statement about the piece centering around his piece.
The concept of virginity has been a topic of intrigue since the birth of humanity – and the loss of virginity is to this day considered an important rite of passage.
Although virginity itself is an abstract idea, the moment the hymen is broken is completely physical, and thus the exact moment of deflowering can be pin-pointed.
For women that is. The loss of male virginity is still more abstract – an undetectable moment in time, does male virginity really exist? If so, can a male ever lose his virginity?
This idea becomes more complex when one considers all types of sexual relations. Men and men, women and women? Virginity has almost become heteronormative in its definition, given that in the most graphic of terms it is the moment when a penis first penetrates the vagina. Therefore when is the moment of loss for a human male? And is virginity even real, for women and men? Or is it just an ignorant word that was used to dictate the value of a woman’s worth pre marriage.
In this immersive art piece, Clayton Pettet will explore the answers to this question in one of the most innovative and intimate ways possible.
On the 25th of January 2014, viewers will be invited to a private art show, in Central London, where the artist will lose his virginity to a live audience, encouraging those watching to question the importance of virginity and whether our traditional values hold true – is deflowering really a loss? Or is it an awakening, a beginning, a milestone that should be celebrated rather than feared?
Dazed has an interview with Pettet where he discusses the response the project has been getting. In the meantime, forward this story to your Republican family members and try to figure out which part makes them more exasperated, the idea of art in general, or homosexuality. Should be a pretty tight back and forth.