Girls Unawares creator Can Sezer uses Cinema 4D to create surreal images which feature nude bodies, hybridized body parts and plenty of body hair. Created as a response to unrealistic and restrictive media-perpetuated body ideals, Girls Unawares releases its content on social media platforms such as Tumblr and Instagram.
“The software I use has a special module for hair. I'm like a virtual barber! I have to colour, curl, cut and comb hair to get the look I want.”
Can Sezer, Girls Unawares
Here, Sezer says, it fits into an ongoing conversation and growing backlash against media-spun body ideals. “You’ll find a huge movement where people are showing their bodies just the way they are. You’ll find unshaved legs and armpits, cellulite, stretchmarks and proper bellies. I think this is a great development. Our bodies aren’t wrong because they don’t look like bodies in adverts.”
The images can also be interpreted as a satirical take on the hyper-sexualised, hairless bodies which dominate the porn industry, which Sezer argues present an equally dishonest portrayal of sex and body image. “Sex is not a job like it’s portrayed in porn movies” he says, “where you have to fulfil the right workflow to get the perfect result”. By approaching the subject of sex through humour, Sezer explains, “I hope that people will stop taking genitals and sex too seriously. It’s natural and not forbidden or wrong. After all, he adds, “don’t you think genitals look pretty funny?”
“I think it’s important for the female body to get rid of that clean, unnatural and sexist image that the media perpetuates.”
Can Sezer, Girls Unawares
Your work could be described as provocative, and you have been referred to as an erotic artist. Would you say that is accurate? Unfortunately, genitals and the various possibilities of what you can do to them are still seen as provocative. With the word ‘erotic’ I connect something hidden and mysterious leaving room for your own thoughts. In my work everything is right in your face and for that I would call myself a pornographic pop-artist.
What do you hope that the close-up depictions and deconstructions of body parts help to accomplish in terms of discussion? Although there is a huge body positivity movement it seems like it’s mostly women fighting for a new image of their bodies. Guys should become aware they need to address the same issues! Firstly because of their own male body – because it’s more likely that you will not have a large porn dick or a six pack.
How long does it take you to create each artwork? In the beginning it took me several days. It was difficult to exactly sculpt what I had in mind, creating realistic looking textures and to find the right look and light. I‘ve learned a lot over the last few years and now it takes me around 2-3 hours. By now I have access to a huge library of genitals I can re-use!
How do you create the hair? The software I use has a special module for hair. I’m like a virtual barber! I have to colour, curl, cut and comb hair to get the look I want. Sometimes I even use a wind generator.
Can you tell us about some of the challenges of rendering something as fluid and malleable as hair? The light and the shininess is really important for the look. You need to find the perfect thickness, it needs to fall down in the right way and shouldn’t collide through objects. Also, if you have a bad camera angle the hair won’t seem tight enough and it looks like the model is bald.