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MELANIE BONAJO

THE NETHERLANDS

Night Soil – #2 Economy Of Love, 2015

HD video, 36 min

Courtesy the artist and AKINCI Gallery, Amsterdam Night Soil - #2 Economy of Love is Part of the Night Soil trilogy, which consists of three independent parts: Fake Paradise (2014), Economy of Love (2015), and Nocturnal Gardening (2016).

Economy of Love investigates the relationship between body and mind, and sensuous and spiritual longings, all while contemplating the human aspiration to decipher the meaning of life. The second film of Melanie Bonajo’s Night Soil trilogy presents a group of young women, amateur sex workers in Brooklyn, New York. They view their practices as a means of reclaiming power and influence within both the patriarchal social order, and the notions of desire and sex practices dominated by men.

 

Their perspective is grounded in the belief that sexuality is not obscene but rather a means of self-empowerment — a positive, liberating experience to be equally shared, wherein bodily sensuality holds the same spiritual value as the fulfilment of mental passions. In this liberating activist utopia, the group draws from the embodiment of mythological Sumerian traditions of sacred prostitution in which the actions of the temple prostitutes bore religious significance.

 

Against the backdrop of a predominantly capitalist society where information and images of sexuality are constantly available, these women attempt to redefine sexual conventions and the concept of intimacy. Melanie Bonajo presents a playful, life-affirming portrait of women who aspire to a notion of sensuality defined as the unity of body and soul, a sacred act that fosters a reevaluation of socially established gender roles.

 

Melanie Bonajo Gallery Page

 

melanie bonajo, Night Soil - Economy of Love, 2015, HD single channel video with sound, 32 min. 46 sec., Courtesy the artist and AKINCI  (3) copy.jpg
melanie bonajo, Night Soil - Economy of Love, 2015, HD single channel video with sound, 32 min. 46 sec., Courtesy the artist and AKINCI  (1).jpg
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