Two Australian artists have set up what they call an "ecosexual bathhouse" at a festival of experimental art in Sydney where people are invited to have sex with the earth to help secure the future of the planet.
Part of the Syndey LiveWorks Festival of experimental art, the bathhouse is premised on "ecosexuality," a "growing" movement involving a queer identity that considers the environment an erotic partner. The bathhouse has been created by artists Loren Kronemyer and Ian Sinclair of the artists collective of Pony Express, according to Vice.
The artists described their work as a "no-holds-barred extravaganza meant to dissolve the barriers between species as we descend into oblivion" as the result of our global environmental crisis.
The festival began Tuesday and ends Saturday.
"Ecosexual Bathhouse is an immersive experience inviting you to leave the urban wasteland behind and open yourself up to an intimate encounter with the biosphere," Performance Space, a partner of the artists collective, says on its website, and adds that the bathhouse is "a roving, self-guided experience."
In an earlier article, Vice explained that the bathhouse journey begins in a white lobby with a big skylight with elevator music tinkling in the background. "Visitors are politely requested by the maître d' to seek consent from all the different species they engage with inside, and offered a choice of accessory, or 'morph.' The morphs simultaneously refer to biological processes and sex toys; they include the Squirter—a strap-on spray bottle that permits the wearer to moisten plant and human species alike—and the Paw—a leather glove that inhibits the thumb in a kind of devolutionary bondage.
"Thus attired, participants enter the pollination chamber, where they are invited to pollinate different varieties of luscious Phalaenopsis orchids set in biomorphic ceramic pots (once they have donned an appropriately scaled finger-condom). The aesthetic, spare and a little Cronenberg-y, strives to slip between object and flesh. The bathhouse progressively shifts away from the standard spa vibe of the lobby, becoming increasingly surreal and disembodied."
Jennifer Reed, a PhD candidate in sociology at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, who is writing a dissertation on ecosexuality, was quoted as saying that the number of those who identify as ecosexuals has grown in the past two years.
Bay Area performance artists, activists and couple Annie Sprinkle and Elizabeth Stephens have published a six-point "ecosex manifesto," one of which states, "We make love with the earth. We are aquaphiles, teraphiles, pyrophiles and aerophiles. We shamelessly hug trees, massage the earth with our feet, and talk erotically to plants. We are skinny dippers, sun worshippers, and stargazers. We caress rocks, are pleasured by waterfalls, and admire the Earth's curves often. We make love with the Earth through our senses. We celebrate our E-spots. We are dirty."
The sixth point reads, "I promise to love, honor and cherish you Earth, until death brings us closer together forever."