The museum is full of genitals. I saw every kind of genital in the animal kingdom — green vaginas, orange vaginas, purple vaginas, and abstract vaginas. I viewed seven of their eight exhibitions (the only one I didn’t enter was “Jump For Joy,” an installation where you can bounce on a “castle of breasts”), but I saw no brown vaginas.
In their “Hardcore” section, which explores porn collections from the late 19th and 20th centuries, I found a brown penis. The only brown penis I saw in the entire museum. It was in a teeny-tiny photograph of a white man and black man having intercourse, labeled under “INTERRACIAL.” Brown genitals barely exist in this museum, and when they do, they exist in proximity to whiteness.
Though very scarce, I did see a handful of black and brown bodies represented throughout the museum — their “Night Fever” and “NSFW: Female Gaze” exhibits were great — but I still found it very odd that out of the hundreds of genitals on display, I only saw white vaginas. Even in the museum’s gift shop, almost all of the photo books were filled with images of naked, cis, white women.
That the Museum of Sex contains no brown genitals contributes to a society that believes that brown genitals are not only dirty and irregular, but that they don’t even exist. I felt like I was at a Pornhub IRL event, where black and brown bodies are scarce, and when they do exist it’s to cater to white fetishes.
After doing some digging, I found that the museum’s board of advisors is all white. Out of 11 board members, none are black or brown. After giving it some thought, I made up my mind that the Museum of Sex is a white supremacist establishment. White is the norm here; white bodies are explored and exalted while black and brown bodies are an afterthought or accessory. Calling it “white supremacist” might sound harsh, but when you consider the country and world we live in, where white supremacy exists in all of our institutions, it’s not far-fetched at all. In order for white supremacy to be tackled, every single institution must fully commit to tearing it down.