It wouldn’t be a Runawaykiwi holiday without some completely bizarre experience … so let me introduce you to the chocolate butt plug exhibition I went to while in Paris. If your mother is reading over your shoulder it may be a good time to suggest she makes a cup of tea otherwise things could get a bit *awks* #blush.
When I was riding the metro I saw a poster for what I thought was an exhibition called the Chocolate Factory by Paul McCartney. Now I love chocolate, and I don’t find the music of the Beatles offensive so it sounded like something that I would enjoy. I didn’t think much more of it until I was walking off my éclairs and stumbled upon the exhibition.
When I walked up the stairs of the gorgeous Paris mint that housed the exhibition I was confronted by a forest of giant inflatable butt plugs. At this point I began to think that I may have misunderstood the poster. Yeah, not Paul McCartney, but Paul McCarthy the controversial artist. Remember the Christmas tree that got put up outside the Louvre? The one that the worlds media giggled over and said oh those silly French, don’t they know that the tree looks like a sex toy? Well, turns out the French did know, and for Paul McCarthy that was the entire point.
So after the forest of ‘trees’ it was on to the chocolate factory proper, and boy could you smell it. As soon as you walked through the door the smell of coco smacked you in the face and left your mouth watering. The first room is where the assistants (all dressed in red with blond bob wigs) made the chocolate; melting down, tempering and then cooling into molds. Then yet more assistants would take the chocolate…shapes…and move them to shelves in other parts of the exhibition.
Day after day of making and moving 3D chocolate butt plugs and chocolate Santas holding butt plugs. The best part of it was that because this was France there was everyone from children to grandmothers viewing the exhibition and considering its artistic merits, anywhere else in the world those hallowed halls would just have been filled with giggles.
There wasn’t much else to it really, just room after room of shelved chocolate Santas holding their presents for naughty adults. Or good adults depending on your point of view. Some of the rooms also had an audio visual components with a projection over the space showing the artist sketching his Santas and planning the shelves and chocolate making machines.
I was totally down with the quirky art, with the deliberate flirting with controversy, but one thing I could never forgive the Chocolate Factory for is that they didn’t give out any damn chocolate. I was even willing to buy and eat a chocolate butt plug I was so desperate for chocolate, but the only one they had for sale in the gift shop was a full sized one for €80ish. Even after driven mad smelling chocolate for an hour that is too much to spend on a chocolate butt plug. And that ladies and gentlemen is a sentence I never thought I would write.