The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Bed-time marathon for art’s and safety’s sake

London, Aug. 30 (Reuters): A naked couple has taken to bed in the front window of a London art gallery for a week in the name of art and to promote safe sex.

Local estate agent Max Whatley, 24, and his 22-year-old nanny girlfriend Meg Zakreta from Poland, will remain in their sloping bed eating, sleeping, chatting and making love until September 5. They are allowed out for just 30 minutes a day.

“The best part is watching people’s reactions. I was worried at first, but people have been very positive,” a laughing Zakreta said, her blue eyes twinkling. “Last night a kid came by with a pair of binoculars, and he wasn’t looking at me,” added an unshaven Whatley.

All that separates them from the gawping public at the Blink gallery in Soho, sleaze heart of the capital, is a pane of glass and a translucent white curtain that can be discreetly drawn round the bed when passion gets the better of them.

The only tangible proof of their horizontal activities — glimpsed only in silhouette — is a mounting pile of used condoms on the floor of their crimson boudoir.

“We are very much in love and want to live together, so this is a bit of an experiment,” said Whatley, whose hairy toes poked out of the bed. “But I suppose I am a bit of an exhibitionist. You wouldn’t get any Tom, Dick or Harry doing this.”

The project, No Inhibition, is the brainchild of artist Liam Yeates who said he got his inspiration from Beatle John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s love-in at the Amsterdam Hilton in 1969.

“The work is meant to make people sit up and take notice of this new sexual revolution,” he said. “Sex in 2002 is terrifying but amazing. HIV and AIDS are an increasing threat, but we live in a society that is more open and more sexualised than ever.”

Yates, 31, said the work — sponsored by condom-maker Condomi — took a year from conception to production.

He picked Whatley and Zakreta after finding them kissing and cuddling in the nearby bustling Covent Garden tourist venue.

Whatley said he had told his parents what he was up to, and they were busy collecting newspaper cuttings of his antics.

Zakreta, on the other hand, said she had been rather more vague with her parents in Poland’s historic city of Krakow.

“They’re very liberal. But Poland is a very Catholic country and their friends might not be so open-minded,” she said.

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