“Type. Swipe. Search. Upload. Download. Post. Stream. These are the new verbs of desire. Our most intimate thoughts, fantasies, and urges are now transmitted via electronic devices to rapt audiences all over the world.” — The Museum of Sex
So for a trip to New York’s Museum of Sex, it was only natural to offer a… well, I’ll let you use your imagination on that one.
One of the exhibits, “Universe of Desire,” was based on data that showed that 13 percent of 400 million Internet searches were for erotic content. Who knew the Internet was used for porn?
It was a fascinating and disturbing exhibit that shared the results of the data coupled with a lot of very private media that people had willingly made public on the Internet. One display had boxes built with keyholes and when I peeped in, I saw a regular couple getting busy. Another display had a series of old-fashioned phones. I picked one up and listened in on a man’s sexual diary. I put down the phone feeling vaguely guilty. The exhibit had made a voyeur out of me, as all of us are when we surf the web and see glimpses of all of our lives.
I am someone who gets amazed by the oversharing I see among my own friends on Facebook, so this was eye-opening for me.
Another exhibit was about the sex lives of animals. By giving many examples from the animal kingdom of same-sex pairings, non-reproductive sex, and non-monogamous “monogamous” pairings, the exhibit questioned what is “normal” when it comes to human sexuality.
I thought I would feel squeamish at the museum, but it was a museum with a serious atmosphere like any other. At one point, though, I found myself in an empty area with only one strange man, and I quickly moved on over to a busy area. I probably wouldn’t have been creeped out by a similar situation at the Smithsonian, but who knows? The guy seemed pretty creepy.
P.S. I visited the museum after taking my trapeze class. A thrilling day in Manhattan!
#67 (101 things in 1001 days): Go to at least five offbeat or small museums.
- Bling at the PEZ Factory
- Seagulls and the Temple of Trash
- Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum
- Melancholy at the Museum of Bad Art
- Let’s Talk About the Museum of Sex