Feeding back: Domitilla Bau @ Spirited Bodies

When I decided to join life modeling for Spirited Bodies I wanted to experience something new, because it sounded very interesting, but I did not know how I could have reacted. The day before coming I was asking myself how I normally feel when people look at me and generally I assume a defensive pose and start to agitate. I thought that staying naked in front of lot of people would have been a little strange for me but finally I found it totally normal and natural and this surprised me.

I liked to see real bodies becoming something different, losing their common shape and colour. I had the feeling that artists through us were finding space to something new, abstracting us, looking beyond what was there and having inspiration and challenging their imagination.

I liked the atmosphere and people. The room was very silent and productive, everyone was literally in what they were doing.

I don’t think that there was something missing or lacking; the heating was great and sometimes I was even sweating; there was water, tea, coffee and biscuits, the place was clean and most of all nothing was forced or imposed. The organisation worked perfectly, I have nothing to complain  and also doing the meeting in advance was better. Just to make sure with who you was dealing.

Yes I would like to do life modelling again either in a group or alone. It helps you to listen to your body and feelings and you have time to think a lot about whatever!

I do not think that interaction is the proper word to explain what was involved between the artists and me. I am not meaning that the process was passive but there was not communication – instead a silent agreement of being the object that they were looking at  and then becoming the subject of their work. For me it was a kind of lateral place where artists through the visual impact of the scene in front of them started their creative process. Yes, I did feel appreciated.

Late in the afternoon on Saturday 11th February, 'The Drawing Theatre' at Battersea Arts Centre: Spirited Bodies 4, photograph by Alex B

Drafting the Manifesto

Spirited Bodies Manifesto

To empower life models; by gaining recognition and understanding for their work

To offer the opportunity of life modelling to other people who can benefit in a variety of ways; by becoming comfortable in their own skin, and engaging in a silent meeting with the self

People get to experience nudity in front of others in a safe, artistic environment, as well as understanding what it is to life model

To reclaim nakedness from negative social assumptions

To give artists a unique opportunity to work from a group of diverse models in directed tableaux

Life models transform their position in the eyes of artists, by empowering themselves. Through sharing their skills with non-professionals, and training potential life models, models may express their previously unspoken qualities

Life modelling is offered as a valuable chance for getting in touch with our inner self, which enhances wellbeing

The stillness of life modelling enforces another level of discipline

Spirited Bodies, www.spiritedbodies.com, is an arts organisation that empowers people through modelling for artists.  Founded in 2010, Spirited Bodies creates events where individuals new to modelling for artists pose in groups, providing a rare opportunity for artists to work from more than one nude model at a time.  For people who are not used to being naked in public, it is an empowering chance to hold a meeting with themselves in a managed artistic context.

Down to Earth

Dear Spirited Bodies, the artist in me is torn with the idea of business. The sensible way to go now is to start up a business basically delivering what I have, but being paid by wealthy women for the service, so standardising it to their requirements. i.e. ensuring that each woman receives a beautiful image of herself after the session, amongst numerous minutiae. Oh like venue, posh venue where I really am running the whole shabang…

Why does this not excite me?

What I love about Spirited Bodies is meeting women more like myself, and making friends, and giving them a wonderful time. I love the creativity and ad hoc-ness of working with whichever group of artists fancies trying it. I honestly don’t have a passion for putting energy into the richer folk. Though perhaps if I saw the transformations I would be inspired.

creative intuitive theatrical challenge directing new models to form good group poses with women they’ve never met before, when they’re all naked in front of a large silent collection of often geriatric (sorry guys but you know I’m right) artists. Yes it’s comedy too. THAT’S WHAT I LOVE!!!

I’ve thought about it, and I don’t think I am about to embark on a direction that doesn’t thrill me. I am bound to follow the love, trusting that the money will naturally materialise