Object Sexualification

Lead: Ekat Osipova

What if humans functioned as a medium for the sexual intimacy of objects?

Humans often sexualise things in non-sexual settings (think of European seafaring culture, where ships are usually given female names, usually by men, and a ship’s inaugural journey is referred to as maiden voyage). This sexualisation, at least in the European cultural context, is usually connected to genitals (Think of how we quietly chuckle and shoot each other knowing glances when we see shapes that resemble penises). As humans and objects are culturally tangled up in all kinds of intimate constellations involving emotions, phantasies, personal stories, overarching narratives, reminiscences, and aspiration, we wondered how the most mundane, everyday objects could become sexual to us, and what their sex life could look like.

From the dawn of time, objects have been condemned to a dull, inanimate existence, serving only human sexual pleasure.
Now, with this groundbreaking innovation, built with state-of-the-art technology, we humans can help objects embark in thrilling sexual escapades and live out their wildest, dirtiest fantasies.
Embrace your filthy human mind and become a medium for object sexual pleasure!

The center-piece of the Object Sexualification experience is an artefact: A retro vending machine where for 1€ visitors may obtain a transparent capsule containing a small 3D-printed genital with an adhesive backside, which they can stick to any object they desire.

What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of sex?

While we use genitals as a sexualising method, this project also explore how objects would have sex with each other, and found that asking these kind of absurdist and seemingly nonsensical questions revealed the deeply entrenched patriarchal and heteronormative notions around sex and sexualisation.

For instance, as we lacked resources to pay artists for modeling diverse genitals, we had to buy 3D model files online. Browsing different databases, we found a) it impossible to find trans and inter* genitals, b) a huge variety of penises, some scanned from real life, many clearly intended to be dildos, and c) a scarcity of vulvas, with most meant to be used for biological/medical education settings.

As another example, we also filmed a human-free amateur porno with some sexualised objects. While filming, we noticed that even in the absence of human bodies, music or sound effects, the film could clearly be recognized as a porno. Playing with different rhythms and speeds in pounding the objects against each other resulted in a strongly penetration-centric sexual interaction that is associated with common hetero-coded conceptions of sex, but also of pornographic films, that put the penis at the center of the event.

Visitors purchasing an object or watching our film gave us feedback ranging from reflections on genital normativity and aesthetics to enjoyment of the absurditiy of sexualising frameworks of thought.

Object Sexualification was initially displayed at Arse Elektronika (part of Ars Electronica). We will update this site if we display it in future, and we are open to exhibition requests.