Artist Asks People To Touch Her Vagina & Breasts in Public To “Stand Up Against Rape Culture” [Video]

Anon| About a year and a half ago, an artist made viral headlines when she allowed strangers to essentially finger her in public, and touch her breasts to, as some headlines describe“stand up against rape culture.”

If it were to really stand up against rape culture, I don’t know why the artist would be selling uncensored versions of the video.. But the censored version is up on her YouTube here, currently at almost 12,000,000 views.

The description of the video reads:

“Milo Moiré’s performance “Mirror Box” is a societal reflection of human sexuality. It’s a expanded reenactment of the “Tap and Touch Cinema” (1968) and a homage to the Austrian artist VALIE EXPORT, who was already fighting for women’s rights in the 1960s through artistic actions. Artist Milo Moiré utilises her body as an instrument, even as a weapon, in order to depict and disrupt power structures. She aggressively seeks the feminine expression of sexual self-determination and explores the boundaries of art and bourgeois morality.

Performance artist Milo Moiré wears a trapezoidal skirt made up of mirrored surfaces; a rectangular opening at the front is closed off by a red curtain. With a megaphone she invites passers-by to reach into the opening for 30 seconds, in order to touch her vagina. “I am standing here today for women’s rights and sexual self-determination. Women have a sexuality, just like men have one. However, women decide for themselves when and how they want to be touched and when they don’t”, declared the artist.

What happens when a woman puts her sexuality on public display, assertively takes the initiative and lays out clear rules for the intimate interaction?

The consensual nature of sexual acts becomes a symbol here. Moiré has additionally taken the liberty of showing female desire, thus giving women a sexual voice. The artist supplements the dominant image of the female body as a mirror of male desire through the transparency of the libidinous black box of woman.

Inevitably it is not only one’s own self that becomes recognisable through the Mirror Box. The audience’s reflection on the mirrored box simultaneously becomes a visual metaphor for the role reversal from voyeur to the object of view: a constant play of inversions analogous to our roles in the digital world.”

Milo Moiré’s piece is kind of cringey. It seems like an appeal to the authority of old art, in the description of the video talking about it being an expanded reenactment of a 1968 performance.

The comments on her video read:

Mainstream media made money producing viral headlines about her performance, such as this one from Cosmopolitan titled “What It’s Really Like to Let People Finger You in Public.”

Milo Moiré, the artist who made the video is actually a Swiss psychologist as well, with a history of performing controversial public art, often nude.

For instance, in 2014 she rode a bus naked, while being painted with the names of clothing items on her body where they are supposed to go, during Art Basel in Switzerland.

In Cologne, Germany she stood outside an art museam naked, painting a white sheet red with paint filled eggs that were stuffed inside her vagina.

So in the video above, she went to Amsterdam, London, and Düsseldorf to let strangers touch her in public, as she claimed it was paying homage to Valie Export’s 1960’s nudist work of art.

In a large mirrored box with a hole in the center of it, people touched her.

She said:

“Yes, this performance was [also] based on the Cologne attacks, and the discussion about respect toward women. I decided to go one step further and show a woman can decide when and if she wants to be touched. There’s always a picture that women are victims. For me, that’s not powerful. When you show that a woman has a voice when it comes to sexuality and has rights, I think it’s a better way to show that women are not only victims. [Mirror Box] is a better way to show that women are strong when they talk about sexuality, and not only victims.

“Mirror Box” is a societal reflection of human sexuality, that’s why I decided to make [the box mirrored]. Before a person came to me to interact, they had to confront all the people around us and the reflections visible in the mirror.

Woman and men made big eyes. [Laughs.] [At] first, they waited, really curious to see what would happen, if somebody would come to me or not. A lot of women also were standing there from the beginning until the end, especially when I did it with the vagina. [In Düsseldorf, Moiré only performed with a breast Mirror Box. In the other two cities, she used two, one covering her breasts and another over her vagina.]. Most women seemed eager and amazed to me.”

In London she was actually arrested, and made to pay a 1,300 Euro fine.