Botticelli's Venus in pornographic version

Pornhub’s latest idea

To impersonate her, a testimonial with an impeccable curriculum: Ilona Staller

Maybe it’s because of the torrid climate so propitious to voluptuousness, maybe it’s because of the starry summer nights, maybe it’s because of the forced abstinence induced by lockdown and the consequent fear of indulging in a new encounter for dread of contracting the deadly virus, but statistics speak for themselves: porn sites register an unprecedented surge of visitors. They are no longer the usual poor devils, awkward, shy, unable to engage in real relationships, without their own imagination, or affected by mental disorders of various kinds. These so-called normal people make a virtue of necessity and use a few peeks to aseptically solve the need. Pragmatic and happy.

The fact is that where there is demand, supply grows and the market organizes itself with upward proposals. Those of Pornhub, for example, have thought of something good, at least in the sense of stirring up controversy that inevitably increases the number of users. They invented Classic Nudes, the first audio guide to the most famous nudes preserved in the most prestigious museums in the world.

The testimonial has an unexceptionable curriculum for the context : Ilona Staller, aka Cicciolina, a porn star with an excellent past as member of parliament and wife of Jeff Koons, one of the most highly rated contemporary art stars on the planet. After all, she has been trying to achieve a sort of cultural redemption. Here she is, now, appearing in a video in precariously equilibrium on a giant shell, wrapped in a tight-fitting flesh-colored jumpsuit that leaves nothing to imagine about her weighted forms, impersonating the ethereal Venus by Botticelli. Of course, she doesn’t lack courage.

She philosophizes, too. In a sort of verbal contortionism, she states peremptorily: “Porn might not be considered art, but some works of art can definitely be considered porn”. Really? And, please tell us, what would they be?

Courbet’s Origine du monde, Goya’s Maya desnuda, Titian’s Venus of Urbino, Cézanne’s Bathers, judging by the other masterpieces that Pornhub is publishing. So the scenes, reinterpreted in their own way by consumed red light actors, become really obscene, from erotic pornographic. Pornography: from ancient Greek drawing of prostitute. It doesn’t matter if effigies and their creators are turning in their graves and the lovers of the sacredness of art are furious but business is business.

Besides, we are not living in the same time where Daniele da Volterra was ordered to cover the pubes of Michelangelo’s nudes in the Sistine Chapel with big underwear. We don’t want to appear as bigots, hypocrites, or people stuck in the past. And what if we don’t like the porn site’s use of images from the history of art for horny customers anyway? We could always applaud the initiative of Eike Schmidt, the director of the Uffizi, who sued the Luxembourg company that owns Pornhub for commercial use of images without permission. Kind of like condemning Al Capone for tax fraud: it’s not much, but it’s something.

The Author

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Nella sua geografia dell’anima ha Venezia, la città natale, nel cuore e la Versilia eletta a buen retiro. Quando nell’adolescenza le chiedevano che cosa avrebbe desiderato fare da grande, rispondeva sicura: viaggiare e scrivere. Così, per raggiungere lo scopo, si è messa a studiare lingue prima, lettere poi.  E sono oltre 30 anni che pubblica romanzi, saggi, scrive articoli, gira per il mondo. Ci sono tre cose - dice - di cui non può fare a meno: il mare, la scrittura, il caffè. Ah: è il direttore responsabile di AW ArtMag.

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