What connects young people, sexuality, and TikTok? This is the question underpins this re- search and to which we will try to answer by investigating Gen Z’s lifestyles and environment. Although TikTok is offering new possibilities in terms of self-expression and sexual acknowledgment, everything related to sexuality is still considered outrageous, especially from older generations. However, both parties ignore that every demonstration of youth sexuality on TikTok unconsciously leans on a historical and artistic background, survived as a cliché. Therefore, to raise cultural awareness of sexuality for both teens and adults, @TheArtcoreProject, a media education project, will rediscover the artistic archetypes be- hind the most provocative TikTok videos.
@TheArtcoreProject is a visual design project that promotes art as a way to rethink contemporary sexuality.
The destruction of all the artistic imagery to crude sensuality in TikTok’s videos opens our eyes to how kitsch has condensed our visual culture into tasteful, erotically satisfying and aesthetically superficial fetishes. These fetishes, unconsciously used by the younger generations, are a quick and perfect escamotage to expose and show their sexuality on social networks, fulfilling the aspirational and identitary need that every young person has in their growth phase.
Seeing young people so aware of their sexuality leads the older generation to judge them maliciously, labelling their aesthetic manifestations without considering the underlying need. Since everything that young people perform on social networks is the product of an artistic and cultural archetype that has come down to us as an unconscious aesthetic reference, I believe that art is the only key to legitimise the manifestations of teenage sexuality on TikTok. For this reason, @TheArtco- reProject wants to encourage young people and adults (educators and others) to approach the world of art not as a learning subject but as a chance to explore how the imagery of art history has shaped our contemporary world.
@TheArtcoreProject wants to support young people’s sexuality through art and digital culture by bringing to light the artistic archetypes that young people unconsciously rely on for their TikTok. At the same time, @TAP also refers to adults as everything that is addressed provocative and transgressive has actually already been discussed in the history of art, and therefore translating these behaviours with malice and perversion only reinforces the fake prude that sees young people as asexual and subservient to adult authority.
Visit @TAP TikTok page here!