Alchemical Masturbation : The waves


October 27 - December 3, 2022


With the concept of alchemical masturbation, arkadi puts in service to the community the healing practice developed “like a raft with which to surf the waves together.” In a text written for Tristesse magazine, they reflect on the consciousness raised by their masturbatory practice: “[...] is the fact that my pleasure is bound up with those I look at a kind of spiritual practice? An experience that affirms that I am inextricably connected to a network of others?”

These others, who lend their voices to this exhibition, differ from the artist in culture, gender, age, in traumas, and in ways of relating to themselves. Each one of these co-conspirators was invited to share their deepest fantasies and to describe the place masturbation occupies in their lives. This dynamic sharing exercise requires equally the trust of the participants and the openness of the artist, who by making a carving “offers themself in service to the fantasies of others”. In this ritual, linocut becomes the intermediary, a medium for the sultry confessions discovered in these erotic scenes made for the use of those who imagine them, and by extension for the use of the community, watching and learning through others’ experience. Manifold, their voices run through graven lines to fertilize and promote revolutionary sexuality as a cure.

-AM Trépanier (translated by Hannah Strauss), excerpt from the exhibition's accompanying zine

arkadi thanks Anne Florentiny, Jeannie Kamins, LaViolette and Sabrina Maiorano for their precious testimonies and their commitment throughout the process of creating the images.