Artist Nails His Balls To The Ground In Moscow’s Red Square

[NSFW] However much you want to protest state policy, isn’t nailing your testicles to the ground a little extreme? Or is that what it takes to garner the kind of media coverage that actually influences governments? From The Guardian:

Red Square has seen a lot over the centuries, from public executions to giant military parades, but a performance artist broke new ground on Sunday when he nailed his scrotum to cobblestones in a painful act of protest.

Pyotr Pavlensky said the protest was his response to Russia’s descent into a “police state” and was timed to coincide with Police Day, which Russia’s law enforcement officials celebrated on Sunday.

“The performance can be seen as a metaphor for the apathy, political indifference and fatalism of contemporary Russian society,” Pavlensky said in a statement. “As the government turns the country into one big prison, stealing from the people and using the money to grow and enrich the police apparatus and other repressive structures, society is allowing this, and forgetting its numerical advantage, is bringing the triumph of the police state closer by its inaction.”

Pavlensky has a history of self-harming art, including sewing his lips together to protest against the jail sentences given to members of Pussy Riot and wrapping himself in barbed wire outside a Russian government building, which he said symbolised “the existence of a person inside a repressive legal system”.

The leading Russian theatre director Kirill Serebrennikov wrote on his Facebook page that the performance was a “powerful gesture of absolute despair”.

Pavlensky walked on to Red Square on Sunday lunchtime, stripped off and nailed his scrotum to the cobblestones of Russia’s most famous public space…

[continues at The Guardian]


Majestic is gadfly emeritus.

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  • Earthstar

    Thanks. I needed to see this this morning…

  • Cortacespedes

    He should have used self-tapping masonry screws. Nails on stone…nuh-uh.

  • lifobryan

    Okay, someone has to say it …. “that took some balls.”

  • DeepCough

    In Soviet Russia, HAMMER NAILS YOU!

  • Juan

    Occasionally, when I’m asked if I’d like to do something I find incredibly tedious or boring, may reply with something like “Fuck that, I’d rather nail my dick to a board.” to express my dislike. But man, actually nailing your nutsack to the street, that’s hard core.

  • Eric_D_Read

    The “performance artist” thing had me re-imagining a scene from Rocky as I read this.
    “Why do you want to nail your sack to the street?”
    “Because I can’t sing or dance.”

  • Rhoid Rager

    The video has already been removed apparently. But I can imagine Moscow Police not bothering to remove the nail before carrying him off to the slammer.