Shashi Naidoo. Modelling agent.
Shashi Naidoo. Modelling agent.
Sarah Paulson. Actress, director.
Emily VanCamp. Actress
Marisa Papen. Model.
The following is an english transcript of the interview on France 2’s pop-culture show, Stúpefiant:
Léa Salamé: Good evening Marisa Papen.
Marisa Papen: Good evening.
L: We are happy to meet you. You’re 26 years old. You have been voted as the most beautiful woman on Instagram and you are known as the girl that poses nude all over the world. Is that an accurate definition?
M: I would not define myself as the most beautiful woman on Instagram. I think it’s a silly way of describing me. But I would say that I am an expressionist, something like that.
L: And what do you want to express?
M: The main reason for my nudity, it’s about freedom. Nudity had often been associated with sexuality, and I would like to desexualize the body.
L: You are completely naked in front of me. You think your image is desexualized? Seriously?
M: For me, yes.
L: I don’t find you desexualized.
M: It’s my perception of my nudity. I try to see in an animal kind of way, not in like a sexy kind of way. That’s not why I’m naked.
L: How can you explain that while you’re naked, you are comfortable, whereas I’m dress but I am uncomfortable?
M: I’m sorry to hear that you are uncomfortable. I did this for years. I have done this for 4 years now. At first, it was in a studio just like this one, and little by little it evolved. We realize that it is just a body. That it’s no big deal. And things just became natural.
L: You are known for posing naked at the Western Wall. And at the Hagias Sophia in Istanbul. It shocked everyone. Religious authorities have told you that it was a place of worship and prayer, and yet you are naked.
M: I try to focus on the positives. When I receive an email from a woman from an oppressed region who tells me, “Thank you for everything you do. We need to fight for us. We need these kinds of photos to help break down the barriers.”
L: You understand that it is shocking? That it’s a place of prayer?
M: Of course. I know that I’m pushing the limits, but that shouldn’t be shocking.
L: But that has always existed in religion. That you have to cover up at a religious site. It’s about respect.
M: I understand. Religions were founded thousands of years ago. They’re not that old. Human beings have existed for much longer. I believe religion was created to control people. I don’t think that should be the future. Religion looks to the past and we look forward.
L: You have posed nude at various sites: Skateboarding in New York, posing at the Western Wall, posing on a beach for animal rights. Is it a political or artistic gesture?
M: I think they both go together. Two years ago, I asked myself the same question. I told myself that I must do something else. That I should stop only taking nude photos and rather send a message that goes along with these photos. I wanted to use my voice to send a statement to what I believe in. I want to help the environment, to speak for women who don’t have a voice.
L: What painter would you have liked to pose for?
M: I really like Modigliani. But as a person, I would love Dali. He was a bit crazy, so I’d think we’d understand each other well.
L: Last question, Marisa Papen, what is your definition of art?
M: For me, it’s about freedom of expression. As long as there an emotion that you can feel and that it is close to your heart, it’s essential for me, in any case.
L: Thank you very much, will you get dressed or go out like this?
M: I don’t think so, it is a bit cold!
Jennifer Aniston. Actress, expressly not a nudist (but the above is a direct quote from the Ellen Degeneres show and I say nudist is as nudist does).
Aliaa Magda Elmahdy. Blogger, activist, revolutionary.
James McEvoy. Actor, Patrick Stewart look-alike.