I think I told about everybody I could contact to tell actually. I was quite proud of it and I enjoy seeing looks of disgust/shock on people’s faces.
Some thought I was awesome, some thought I hadn’t taken my medication and was experiencing a bout of mania, some just didn’t seem to care, so a mixed reaction really. When I told my boyfriend he just rolled his eyes and sighed, probably because half the internet has probably seen my vagina and I’m forever doing off the wall things. Someone else was really jealous that the artist had been able to see and touch lots of vulvas.
I went to Art College and studied graphic design. Sculpture and ceramics were always my weak points, so I kinda envy people who can make things. Body casting has been an obsession of mine for a while, I’ve always wanted something done, now I do and it’ll be in exhibitions, it’s a win-win situation.
I don’t really mind nor care about the individuals who will be viewing the piece, they wont know who they are looking at and I wont know who is looking, what could possibly go wrong?
I did purchase a cast of myself, I will be showing everyone who wants to see it, which is the majority of the people I know. It will be kept in the bedroom naturally as my flat mate is utterly minging and I really could do without him getting any of those thoughts about me.
I wouldn’t say that being cast for this project has changed me in any way, well not anything drastic, I’ve found myself wondering about the variety of vaginas there are though.
I have read some threads regarding labia on internet forums offering both female and male perspectives, some have preferences, some don’t. These preferences ranged drastically. A lot of girls have also said that in the past they have considered labiaplasty as a result of remarks, overheard conversations, primarily from men describing larger labia as ‘nasty’ or ‘weird bits of meat hanging about all over’. This seems to start happening mid-puberty, around 14-15, I read that one girl started thinking she wasn’t normal because of conversations overheard in school. I was one of those girls once too and I wouldn’t have wasted my late teenage years worrying about if I was ‘normal down there’ if someone had actually shown something along the lines of the great wall of v*agina, saying ‘hey, look, every single one is totally different and it’s ok!’
Then there was the documentary a year or so ago about ‘The Perfect Vagina’, I really felt sorry for the girl featured in it for being teased about her labia that she had them cut off, all the while seemingly trying to get reassurance by saying ‘it looks better, doesn’t it?’ like she wasn’t even sure herself.
I am hoping that The Great Wall of Vagina will make people think and tear down a few misconceptions that all labia/vulvas are the same, or even ought to be the same.
I travelled from London to Brighton to get my cast done, I was in some wired state of excitement, I was still excited after I got there and I had the cast done, and also afterwards, in fact I am still excited now.
I think it will be amazing to see the final piece, I’m going to take everyone I know hopefully, especially my mam, she thought I was crazy when I told her. Unfortunately due to the nature of the exhibition it will probably be over 18’s only, which is a shame as my sister is 14 and if anyone needs this kind of guidance it’s the teenagers. It would probably be too ‘gross and un-cool’ to go look at some plaster vaginas on a wall with mam though!
The casting itself was a positive experience, just like going to the doctors, but more friendly and a bit less clinical!
I can’t say that I’ve really encountered many negative reactions about being cast for the project; the only one that sticks out is from some freak on a bulletin board telling me I love myself too much!
I hadn’t even considered it being something sexual, before, during or after. It was just one of those things you do for the love of art, unless you were after a sexual experience in the first place, then I imagine it probably was for some people!
I’d say that taking part in this project was ‘in character’ for me. I am forever showing people pictures of myself, I got in trouble once because I ended up showing pictures to some guy that my best friend was trying to pull, she didn’t like that! I am actually waiting to submit my model application for an alternative porn site.