supported by Arts Council England, Farnham Maltings and Folkestone Quarterhouse
Pube is a 45 minute one-on-one piece that explores our relationship with pubic hair and the reasons, culturally determined but rarely questioned, that inform the choices we make. Pubic hair often has negative connotations, which we internalise: they silently shape the way we feel about ourselves and the ones we are intimate with.
Part-performance, part-conversation, for one audience member at a time, Pube provides a safe environment, a tailor-made experience where participants have a voice and agency. Together, we make a portrait that is a reflection of how one feels about a part of them that is usually hidden yet meaningful in relation to their identity.
The performance opens a space for a conversation that I wish we all had more often. It is not aimed at one gender in particular: it is a conversation I’m interested in having with as many people as possible, from as many different backgrounds as possible. I don’t judge or advise; I want to provide a space where we can question our decisions and hopefully make them in a more informed way.
The portraits exhibition travels with me wherever I perform the show, and is archived here, on this website. It will keep growing as the project evolves, documenting the many conversations I’ve had and immortalising a moment in time. The portraits exist here so they can continue the conversation outside of the performance, with the people who took part in it and the ones who didn’t.
Conceived, written and performed by: Eugénie Pastor Design: Verity Sadler
Producer and accomplice: Sally Rose Outside Eye: Shamira Turner
The Guardian ran a feature on Pube, which you can read here.
4-5 March 2016, WOW Folkestone, Quarterhouse
6 March 2016, WOW London, Southbank Centre
7-8 October 2016, Calm Down Dear, Camden People's Theatre
21-22 July 2017, DEparture Lounge, Derby Theatre
Pube is available for touring. For any enquiry, get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Photos: India Roper-Evans
Although the piece officially premieres on Friday 11th March 2016 as part of Women of the World Folkestone, then transferring to Southbank Centre for its London premiere as part of WOW 2016, it was created over several months and through multiple work in progress performances. Therefore, this portraits exhibition started in September 2014 and will continue to grow during 2016 and 2017. Thank you to all of those who took part in those work in progress at Battersea Arts Centre, Latitude Festival, University of Surrey and Farnham Maltings.
Why make portraits of people using their own pubes?
Because it might make us start to talk about pubes. And because I think that to use the hair in that way transforms it into a “noble” material worth of artistic attention (and of conversation), often in contradiction with the way it is perceived – as something that is dirty, disgusting, shameful.
Why do I want to talk about pubes so much?
Because it is something that is still difficult to talk about. Do you know how you’re supposed to style yours? Your partners are supposed to style theirs? Is this something you care about? Does it influence some of the decisions you make, or alter your self-esteem and the way you see yourself? What are your models for styling or grooming yourself? What do you expect your sexual partners to look like, and why? I think there are many things left unsaid on the matter, and I think there are worth investigating, so we can all be ourselves, at one with our pubic decisions.