Once a year, eclectic collectors, trendy twentysomethings, accessorized hipsters, happy yogis, and edgy creatives descend upon Miami Beach for the coolest art party of the year: Art Basel. The event features contemporary art from both established and well-known makers, as well pieces from names that are on the rise. This year, there’s a trend emerging, evidenced on Instagram and social media: female-first and sex-positive art. And it’s precisely why you may have seen a neon vagina, with fireworks all around it, lighting up your news feed.
The I Can Feel installation, created by 56-year-old Suzy Kellems Dominik, lights up for exactly 26.8 seconds (so there’s your selfie-friendly window of time). And that specific duration is intentional, Dominik tells Elle, as it represents a fantasy orgasm, and “obviously, the lights begin on the clitoris,” she says.
“Seriously. Take pictures. Take tons of pictures. We as women need to take up space. We need to be seen everywhere…. We have a long way to go before we’re depicted as passionate, full, flawed, evolving, 360-degree people.” —Suzy Kellems Dominik, I Can Feel artist
Dominik’s piece is one of many that’s creating a “future is female” vibe at Basel. Other works on the NSFW spectrum include “a spread-eagle abstract,” “a pastiche of glitter pussies,” and graffiti’d female forms emblazoned with the words “cunt” and “hootchie,” Elle reports. OG lady-part-inspired artist Georgia O’Keeffe would be proud that vaginas appear to be going mainstream, Dominik says.
“I think it’s great that everyone wants to interact with it,” she tells Elle of her installation. “Seriously. Take pictures. Take tons of pictures. We as women need to take up space. We need to be seen everywhere…. We have a long way to go before we’re depicted as passionate, full, flawed, evolving, 360-degree people.”
Of course, this year’s Art Basel show isn’t the first public gathering to get real about sexuality and put the female anatomy on the main stage. From the pink pussy hats at the Women’s March in January to the Cycles+Sex conference earlier this year, conversations about women’s bodies—in a non-shaming, non-judgmental, totally and awesomely outspoken way—are finally becoming the norm.
Here’s a look at some of the pieces that prove vaginas are officially #trending.
Women might not be the only ones lining up to snap selfies: Here’s how to talk to men about women’s health and sexuality. Or, if an LOL-worthy, back-to-basics approach is more your style, consider following Tracee Ellis Ross’s lead.
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