Amsterdam Tourist Information • Posted: June 3, 2007
This video shows U.S. photographer Spencer Tunick instructing and photographing hundreds of naked women on bikes.
This photo shoot is one of several that took place during his June 3, 2007 Amsterdam ‘installation’ (as Tunick calls these art events).
Floortje van Dijck reports in Dutch daily De Pers about her own participation, first in the parking garage and later on her bike on a nearby bridge.
“We had to stand on bikes along the spiral onramps of the parking structure. This was easier said then done, as there was nothing to hold on to.”
Indeed, some participants report that they felt afraid when at one point they were instructed to stand on the chairs, with their backs to the camera, and then to lean back.
“You are meters above the ground,” van Dijck writes. “The photographer’s assistents are shouting instructions. Apparently someone on the second tier is not yet positioned correctly. But then, no one said that participating in a work of art would be comfortable.”
Stiff Nipples and Goosebumps
“With stiff nipples and goosebumps 2.000 people change from difficult position to difficult position.”
“I am naked, but it has nothing sexual, nothing strange about it. Between all these nude people I feel at ease, though I would have preferred the temperature to be about ten degrees warmer.”
Next the men and women are separated. The men are directed to a photo shoot at the gas station next to the parking garage.
Meanwhile, the women with bikes — selected out of the larger group of women — make their way to a bridge across the Lijnbaansgracht canal.
There is some giggling, but Tunick repeats his “Don’t smile!” like mantra.
“I’m nog laughing that much either. It is now light and outside the safe intimacy of the parking structure the eyes of the cameras and the paparazzi on the other side of the canal suddenly make me feel very naked and vulnerable.”
As natural as the nudity felt within the protection of the naked group, so unnatural it feels as soon as the shoot is over, van Dijck says. “It will take a while before we are truly free.”
Incidentally, when van Dijck asked others why they participated in the photo shoot, most answered, “for kicks,” “out of curiosity,” or “because I like his work.”
While some participants and onlookers no doubt were attracted by the prospect of seeing naked people, the Dutch generally have an easy-going attitude toward nudity.Original content © Copyright 2009 DutchAmsterdam.nl [Read what that actually means]