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1/13 — Evelyn Bencicova

Art

8.26.2015

Exclusive: Pornceptual Is Your Art Porn Savior [NSFW]

Deep in the heart of Berlin, club kids are writhing naked at a genderfluid sex party that’s taking over the city. The party, aptly called Porn, is hosted by a radical queer porn project called Pornceptual. The brainchild of twins Eric and Chris Phillips, production manager Raquel Fedato, and film director Emre Busse, the party was conceived in Brazil in 2010 and relocated to the German capital of drugs, sex and Club Maté to take advantage of the city’s notoriously lax sexual attitudes.

The Phillips twins and Fedato have used their unique blend of user-created content and artistic focus to bring Pornceptual to the masses. They’ve blogged, made video documentaries, and hosted the infamous parties. Now they’ve released their first quarterly web magazine. The first issue, “Pornifesto”, focuses on desire, vulnerability, radical gender identities, and the external gaze within porn. While taking a break from brainstorming the initial concepts for the second issue, Chris and Raquel had a chance to sit down with Milk’s Chris Thomas to talk pornographic artistry, sexually curious youth, and fucking in public.

The entire concept of Pornceptual is that you see porn as the ultimate means of self-expression. What prompted you to create the project?

C: We started in Brazil but it started more as a blog. Since moving to Berlin, we decided to have something more unique.

R: I also think that it actually got bigger in Berlin because in Brazil, people are very conservative. We thought it would work best in Berlin when we took into consideration that people are way more open minded about sexuality and shit. We’re both Brazilian and it’s funny because people think of the country as very sexy. They think people there are cool and open minded but it’s not true. Brazilians sexualize everything but are still very conservative about nudity and sex. It’s a big taboo.

C: Brazilian people are still overexposed to violence but they fetishize nudity and sexualize every part of the body. In Europe, we have this freedom and acceptance with so many different kinds of bodies.

R: Especially in Germany, they’re really relaxed about it. I’m half German and I remember as a kid hanging out with my family at the lake and everyone got naked. I was like “oh my god what are they doing?” They are just so relaxed about it and that’s so different from Brazil.

In your work, you have a lot of queer and transgender bodies represented along with many different body types and races. How do you avoid fetishizing these bodies like the mainstream porn industry does?

C: I think the best way for us is to keep the project very open so anyone can participate.

R: We would never go for a certain type of body or anything like that because that’s our criticism of commercial pornography. The body shapes are very classic and fake in mainstream porn so it’s important for us to include every kind of person regardless of shape, color, or sexuality.

Your Porn party is pretty legendary in Berlin. What sets it apart from other sex parties?

C: For us, it’s important for it to be an art event as well as being about sex. We are collaborating with different artists for each party and we have a lot of art performances from visual artists and we also screen movies. It’s about the whole package.

R: I think we are providing a link to the art world and that’s what makes the difference. I think visuals are very strong and people actually dress up and get naked. We also have a young crowd coming to the parties who are willing to experience something new. I think that makes people more interested about it. It’s not some idealized project where nobody can come in and do something with us.

A study came out recently stating that nearly half of British youth say they aren’t completely straight. Do you think your openness to sexuality translates into more youth coming to your parties?

R: I think every time you tell someone they can’t do something they get curious about it and I think that’s what our generation is experiencing. In our parent’s generation, they thought it was a big taboo so it made us curious about it.

C: I personally come from a very religious and conservative background so I had to oppress my sexuality for so long. Now I can finally explore it and enjoy the freedoms that I have here. I think a lot of people come from the same background.

In comparison to other porn being created right now, what makes yours unique?

C: What’s special about the project is that most people who pose for us or are in our videos have never done porn before. They’re just friends or people who learn about the project and like the concept and want to do it. In a way, it’s better because they aren’t doing it just for the money. We are very critical about the way the industry treats people so we want a different relationship with the models and actors.

R: The main goal of our project isn’t just to do porn but also to make people feel comfortable about their bodies and the way they look. Even for me, I’m very tall and in Brazil I always felt weird and fat. By doing Pornceptual and hosting the parties I started to feel way more comfortable with the way I look. That’s what we want to bring to people.

You both work with porn as a career now. What was your experience like with porn before Pornceptual?

C: When I was a teenager of course, but I was never really happy with the porn I could find. That’s why I started the project because it wouldn’t turn me on anymore. I think it was all just so artificial and was always the same kind of porn. I just had to do my own stuff.

R: I was never a big fan of porn. My dad had tons of magazines so I would look through all of them and I always found those more exciting than the movies. As Chris was saying, the movies are really boring. The old vintage ones can be cool because there’s a narrative behind it but nowadays it’s just—

C: It’s truly just people fucking. It isn’t even about sex. There’s no intimacy or background.

The project is very fetish-friendly. As the founders of Pornceptual, do you have any fetishes you like to explore?

C: I think we are both experimenting and that’s why it’s so fun to have the project and throw these parties. At every party I try to get more creative with my sexuality but I don’t know… I like outdoor sex and exhibitionism. That makes the parties fun for me because I just like to experiment.

I know that one of your long-term goals is to make porn and sex culturally acceptable as a topic. What other goals do you have for the project?

C: I think our main goal is to just fight the stigma. We are treating everyone in a very proper way and doing things with a very strong concept and aesthetic. If we can show people that we produce this alternative that blends art and porn, I would be very happy.

R: For us, it’s important to explore all of the possibilities. That includes parties, webpages, magazines, exhibitions, workshops, movie screenings and everything else. It’s what we’ve been doing and we want to bring it to different cities.

C: Our main goal is to form a collective that focuses on collaboration.

R: Without all of these people involved, we would never have Pornceptual.

Visit Pornceptual’s website here

Photos from “Pornifesto” by Pornceptual.

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