Erika Lust is a filmmaker, mother, writer, blogger, owner and founder of Erika Lust Films where she offers an alternative to the mainstream porn industry. She is also the creator of groundbreaking audiovisual project XConfessions, the first crowdsourced series that brought adult film to cinema screens. Born in 1977 in Sweden, she studied political sciences, feminism and sexuality at the University of Lund.
Tired of chauvinistic and tacky mainstream porn, she moved to Barcelona in 2000 where she took classes in film directing before bursting into the adult industry in 2004, with the indie short film The Good Girl – a humorous statement of principles using the ‘pizza delivery boy’ trope. The immediate success of this first attempt encouraged her to pursue a career in adult cinema. Erika has directed four multi-award winning features: Five Hot Stories For Her, Barcelona Sex Project, Life Love Lust and Caberet Desire, and has also written five books including Let’s Make A Porno and her acclaimed erotic novel La Canción de Nora (‘Nora’s Song). In 2013 Lust began the XConfessions series, a site where users watch short films based on their own anonymous sexual confessions.
Every month Erika Lust picks two of her followers’ fantasies and turns them into erotic explicit short films. Now in its third year, Lust has filmed over 100 short films, has released XConfessions seventh volume and has now invited guest directors to be part of the project, supporting the burgeoning alternative talent across the globe. In 2015, she gave her ‘It’s Time for Porn to Change’ talk at TEDxVienna which gained her notoriety for her campaign to change porn.
Lust’s philosophy for a new adult cinema is based on four main ideas: women’s pleasure matters, adult cinema can have cinematic values, we need more body types, different ages and diverse races and the production process has to be ethical. She defends the importance of the female gaze and the need of having women behind the camera in all key positions. Lust lives in Barcelona with her partner and husband Pablo and their two daughters, Lara and Liv.
Female Pleasure Circle is an homage to the boundless nature of female sexuality. Like all XConfessions films, it was inspired by an anonymous confession in which the writer praised her experience of guided group masturbation. In response to this, Lust has created a work that consciously challenges the notion of masturbation as a solitary act, whilst simultaneously questioning the stigma surrounding female self pleasure. An all female cast of 6 begin to tentatively explore themselves, but as they are gradually subsumed with pleasure they begin to merge into one another, their bodies intertwining both sexually and spiritually as they subvert traditional boundaries between the self and the other to create a profound and empowering collective force. Through this film Lust offers a bold and joyful representation of the infinite power latent in human sexuality.
The screening will be opened by the performance Universal Studio Falls by Project PC, a collective who aims to help establish the nude body in the public space as a conduit to promote self and wider acceptance. Founded on the shores of a lake in Finland, what initially started as a one-off ‘experiment’ quickly grew into a series of events and performances across Europe. Project PC’s work explores concepts such as the disconnection between the public and private space, gender roles and identity and environmental degradation.