Losing It for Art

By Devon Delfino, Staff Writer
@devondelfino

The artist behind the act./PHOTO VIA Tumblr user thankyouartschoolstole

In a move reminiscent to the famous pact of “American Pie,” a London teen plans to lose his virginity next year, according to the UK edition of the Huffington Post. Here’s where it gets interesting: He plans to lose it in front of an audience of 50 to 100 people, all in the name of ‘art.’ The installment, “Art School Stole My Virginity,” will take place on Jan. 25.

But how can one make a life event like losing one’s virginity into art? What does that even mean?

For Clayton Pettet, the artist, the performance piece is a means of expression and the ultimate way of exploring the issue of virginity and share the experience in an once-in-a-lifetime installment.

On his Tumblr page, Pettet states, “The Idea of ‘Art School Stole My Virginity’ came around when I was Sixteen, when all my peers at school were losing their Virginity it was incredibly hard for me to ask why I was still a Virgin and why it meant so much to the people all around me. My piece isn’t a statement as much as it is a question. The whole aspect of Virginity was incredibly emotional for me and has been ever since.”

The controversy surrounding the piece points to the obvious as many have speculated that Pettet’s installation cheapens the right of passage by turning it into a spectacle rather than letting it remain a private affair.

But, perhaps this move is warranted; looking to the media, we are constantly bombarded with sexual displays; from Miley Cyrus groping Robin Thicke at the VMA’s, to incredibly sexually explicit music lyrics and videos, it seems that the creative world is already shrouded in a heightened sexual awareness.

Pettet’s goal is to stimulate discussion about the issue of virginity; with the coverage his installation is already receiving has already started that. After all, it has been said, “Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable.”

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