Scientific research suggests that dolphins conduct the sexual activities simply for sexual pleasure apart from the purpose of reproduction, which makes them one of the few creatures that have the sexual activities similar to humans’ ones. And these varied sexual activities also pose influences on their social behaviors. Take dolphins as an example, the Chinese scientists observed that a baiji dolphin raised in Chinese Academy of Sciences demonstrated behavior of sexual masturbation by rubbing its ventral and penis against the bottom of the pond, and this behavior followed a periodical pattern. Furthermore, dolphins also engage in a broad variety of sexual activities as homosexuality, orgy, and interbreeding. Hence, beyond the various aforementioned theories of animal rights, I wonder if “sex rights” for animals might possibly exist. That is to say, do animals have the same rights as humans do to pursue sexual pleasure and a variation of sexual practices?
Based on this proposition, this project aims to create an imaginary work of sci-fi-ish scenario focused on dolphins’ sexual pleasure; this fictional future world is constructed with the methodology of “Design Fiction” as reference, and for this future scenario we will design an ocean park at the service of dolphins’ sexual pleasure. This amusement park does not take the traditional form of park that keeps animals captive, but boasts a mobile open-space architecture that is built around the habitat of these marine creatures, allowing dolphins to pass through this park freely.. The facilities in the amusement park are similar to sex toys, so as to enrich animals’ sexual activities. To sum up, we are going to design a Dolphin Eroticarium to provide the dolphins with sex-related services.
“Dolphin Eroticarium” will be like a large mobile vessel with an architectural space open to the sea, and it will sail around the waters where dolphins are around for them to pass through freely. The space comes in four parts: “Sex-toy Playground Area,” “Recreational Pufferfish Drug Area,” “Human-Dolphin Interaction Area,” and “Dolphin Health Center for STDs.” In the “Sex-toy Playground Area” there are all sorts of water tunnels and spaces for dolphins to swim through, as well as a wall where an array of sex toys designed in the shapes of dolphin genitals are installed for the dolphins to rub their genitals against to reach sexual pleasure. Besides, scientists discovered that dolphins would poke a pufferfish with their mouth to make it release its toxin; with this chemical substance, dolphins can so obtain the feeling of a bizarre bliss, which resembles the concept of humans using recreational drugs. Therefore, “Recreational Pufferfish Drug Area” is an imagination picturing future scientists extracting this substance for dolphins to safely use this dolphin-specific recreational drug in this area. “Human-Dolphin Interaction Area” is inspired by the way that ocean parks offer people the interaction experience with marine creatures; in this area, under the guidance of trainers and scientists, visitors can help dolphins massage their genitals to make them gain pleasure. Apart from all these designs for dolphins’ recreation, due to the observed dolphin-specific STDs by scientists, this park particularly incorporates a dolphin Health Center for STDs to provide dolphins with STD-related medical services. In “Human-Dolphin Interaction Area,” trainers will also show the visitors the ways to examine dolphin genitals to look for for disease symptoms.
In this fictional future, people will arrange a series of innovative dolphin watch eco-tours, including boat trips to the “Dolphin Eroticarium” to watch dolphins engage in sexual activities, interaction programs to help dolphins get pleasure, etc. The core of all these activities is an attempt to boost dolphins’ pleasure, which is differentiated from the past ocean park model that makes dolphins perform for humans’ entertainment.
The overall concept intends to contentiously raise questions on the present-day zoos and ocean parks, and to echo to what nowadays many animal protection groups advocate: animals are not to be used by humans for performances and displays. On top of that, for the animal welfare, is it possible in the future world for human beings to bear the cost to service these creatures for their animal sexuality and desire? If the sex-related service is to be provided to dolphins, isn’t it accountable to attempt to understand these animals’ sexual behaviors? And in the process, will the interaction between human and animals change? The abovementioned philosophical thinking on ethics and morals as well as the investigation into social phenomenon are what this art project attempts to deal with.