10.18.19 / New York / New York

Super FUNLAND at The Museum of Sex Is a Bubbly Carnival of Carnality

The name says it all

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • In the last few years Artistic Director Serge Becker, Curator Lissa Rivera, and Founder Daniel Gluck have brought some of the most intriguing and thought provoking exhibits to the Museum of Sex—from —but rarely has there been an exhibit that revels in carnality as the vibrant and kaleidoscopic new experience SUPER FUNLAND. Here the museum buoyantly indulges not in sex itself, but the cultures that have formed around it, and the way society has embraced sex through entertainment. The exhibit begins with an introduction depicting the ways various societies throughout history used events and celebrations as a way to forego their traditional values and express their Dionysian tendencies. It leads up to the 20th century, when carnivals would use the guise of curiosities and oddities as a way of displaying nudity and sex. Guests are then immersed into their own carnival, with artist-made installations that depict the most entertaining, titillating,  and admittedly silly aspects of sex. 

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • There’s everything from dioramas depicting mid-century carnival exhibits, and corresponding black and white videos showing some of the rare acceptable forms of public nudity. There are claw machine games, and of course the prizes are breasts and genitals, and a fortune teller machine that replaces the dated gypsy figure with one of Rupaul. There’s a photo booth where you can superimpose your face onto a porn video – which ends up far more funny than dirty. There’s a Tunnel of Love in which you get a trippy video installation that showcases a more modern visual style. And at the end of the exhibit when you want to head to the Lollipop Lounge—the ground floor bar where there’s a stripper pole with intermittent dancers and themed cocktails—you have the option of entering through a slide that comes out of a set of zebra striped legs (if we’re being delicate about it).

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • This is an exhibit that’s almost entirely fun and games, but it also conveys what is essentially the mission of the museum. It deflates the notion of sex as some sacred act, and allows us to appreciate it for what it is, especially in its most laughable forms. Throughout history these festivals and carnivals have served as a temporary release from inhibition, and that’s precisely the feeling SUPER FUNLAND captures; regardless of who you’re with. Young, old, gay, straight, male, female, when you’re pulling on dildos in a glory-hole-turned whack-a-mole style game, riding a bull machine, or jumping around in a bouncy castle made of breasts, it’s impossible not to have a laugh.

    SUPER FUNLAND: Journey into the Erotic Carnival is on view at the Museum of Sex beginning October 18th

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]

  • [Photo: Kris Graves]