Jackson Pollock famously flung paint from his brush on to canvas with his “drip” technique. Look at any one of his abstract paintings and you may notice that there is something vaguely sexual about them — all fluids mingling and explosive releases. Other artists strip away any subtleties. The Latvian makers of Allure Art go overtly sexual with their abstract art making kits, which encourage users to create art during the act of sex.
Conceived by Elina Vaivode and Toms Grinbergs, Allure Art is billed as an “abstract art kit for adults”. Each kit includes one cotton canvas, washable and safe colours, a protective plastic floor cover, two pairs of disposable slippers, a shower sponge and an instruction manual. Users take it from there.
“Imagine a primal erotic moment spilled out onto canvas in unmistakable tones, unique to you and your lover; patterns bursting with colour, telling the tale of a sexual journey that you shared together — immortalised forever,” the website reads. “Allure Art kits allow you to be the Dali of your dreams and create a masterpiece of your own making, all while enjoying the pleasure of each other’s bodies — a real expression of your love displayed in glorious strokes and colours.”
We spoke to Vaivode about Allure Art, discussed how sex is an artistic act, and how it took one year of sex to get the proper Allure kit down to a science.
What gave you this idea originally? Had you long been fascinated with art that incorporated the body?
Elina Vaivode: It all started as an experiment called “let’s make a painting, naked”. And so we did. The experience was incredible, as was the result, and it just sort of developed from there. We still have our very first painting at home, which has become a very special reminder that everything is possible, and you can actually turn any idea into great business opportunity.
Who is “we”?
Elina Vaivode: Me and my business and life partner Toms Grinbergs. We have worked on this project together – from the time it was just an idea to when it became an actual product.
Has there been art that grew directly out of the act of sex that inspired this?
Elina Vaivode: It was the idea to capture the moment of sex, something no one has ever done, and our curiosity to see how it actually looks like. And the end result was so great — so many different shapes, sizes, textures and colours.
Is sex, in your opinion, an artistic act?
Elina Vaivode: In a sense, yes. I think it is an art without any stencils, rules or prejudice, where we all are as we are. Don’t know if you noticed, but the Allure Art name itself has two meanings: “allure” and “all u are”. It is the moment where you can’t cheat or pretend, and therefore the painting is real.
Why did you feel that people might want to have a kit where they could create art during sex?
Elina Vaivode: I think this is a great opportunity to see sex from a whole new perspective — to view it as a different kind of experience, more emotional than physical.
It’s an unforgettable experience that not only brings people closer, but also makes the medium of art accessible to everyone. I think from the start we wanted to make using an Allure Art Kit as simple as possible for couples looking to spice things up in the bedroom, while making them understand that their love can be expressed in glorious tones and colours. I believe we’ve achieved that. But, I guess we’ll let others be the judge.
You capture the emotional aspect of sex, but you also capture the motion of it or the movements. Was that important as well?
Elina Vaivode: Yes, of course, without a movement there is nothing. Also these paintings can’t be created.
How big are the canvases, and how comfortable is it having sex on them?
Elina Vaivode: Canvases come in 1 size, 1×1.37m (perfect size to look impressive enough on any wall). Everything this kit includes is geared towards comfort and safety – aside from the experience itself, of course. Safety was the most important of the testing process, as we wanted colours to be certified and approved for use on skin.
What kind of paints are you using that are safe for the skin?
Elina Vaivode: When we were making the very first painting we used oil-based colours, but, when we realised they don’t work very well, as you simply can’t just wash them off (you can imagine the mess), we quickly started searching for better ones. It took a while. We searched the whole world and, believe me, a lot of paintings were made during the testing process. But in the end we found the safest and best possible colours and canvasses for the job. The whole episode took about a year, but it was well worth it.
What were people’s initial reactions to Allure Art when you told them you were developing this kit?
Elina Vaivode: As always, reactions were varied and different depending on personalities. But generally it was a surprise and of course many asked questions like, “But, how?!”.
For those who have bought the Allure Art kit, what have their reactions been?
Elina Vaivode: They all are very excited to try the kit and to see the final result hung on the wall. We believe that everyone should be able to express themselves and there’s no better way of doing so than by making love. Usually those who receive the kits are couples who are looking to making lifelong memories while spicing up their sex lives.
Are some of the people who have created art not couples, but just people who enjoy casual sex?
Elina Vaivode: Probably, but as we observe our clients’ secrecy, I can’t confirm this kind of information.
Do you plan on making different art sex kits?
Elina Vaivode: For now, we are concentrating on this project, but I can safely say this will be the first of many.
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