Boners and bottles were popped this Thursday at CV Bar in the Hotel on Rivington, as
upwardly mobile young men mixed with the just-out-of-college,
sweatpants-to-strip-club crowd and the women who love them. CV Bar
became crowded with people ordering free vodka cocktails while girls
danced and sang along to Jay-Z songs for the few moments of male
attention they would have before everything went naked.
The entire room froze as the young Argentine artist De La Plata entered,
leading his choo-choo train of pootie tang around the perimeter before
placing each of four models at a different station. I found myself
sitting in a booth less than an inch away from an ass shaped like two
“There’s not enough light, you can hardly see anything!” complained Nick, a drunken onlooker sitting beside me and slurping a vodka cranberry.
woman standing on top of a booth, her landing strip the trimmest in the
quartet, posed for cameras as if on the red carpet. “What are you
wearing?” one fan shouted. At another corner of the room stood a girl
with her hair in Princess Leia bunches and her pubes shaped like a tiny
exclamation point. A third lady interacted with a group of guests. Most
revelers, however, opted to ignore the models save for the occasional
half-second glance, while the naked girls carried on unfazed.
ladies were cycled in and out of the room and re-arranged in different
positions throughout the hour. I was ready to consider the implications
of the exhibit, the idea of challenging America’s puritanical attitudes
towards sex and the line between art and pornography, when I noticed
that each naked girls’ body was splashed with glitter.
“They’re just putting the pussy on a pedestal,” said partygoer Chazz, between
slurred complaints about how all the clothed girls had boyfriends. “I
asked one of the models a question and she ignored me because she was
more interested in the other guy she was talking to. It was just like
talking to any other girl at any other bar.”
Outside, the artist explained his choice of venue: “We wanted to pique people’s senses and push people’s boundaries.”
One of the models, a girl named (according to her card) Serafina: Tantric Performer, Belly Dance Preisstess, Energy Healer told
me she got the gig on Craigslist. I asked how she knew that it wasn’t
porn. “I didn’t get a weird vibe. If it would have been in a different
part of town, like the middle of nowhere, people would think it’s porn,
but this is an artsy area.”
Back inside, Zommick, a red-bearded young man in a yarmulke told me, “They are so brave to stand like this. That is what makes it art.”
As the hour came to a close I sat at the edge of a booth, thinking about what
had said. When I looked up, all the girls had been positioned in the
center of the room in a big square. Again, I’d inadvertently sat as
close as possible to the pair of VJ’s that were staring me right in the
face. For a brief moment, a flashbulb lit up the room, completely
illuminating both vaginas.