Grab the Bull by the Horns – Xavier In His Own WordsApr 17, 2021
Xavier talks about being a long-term naturist, a life model, the outdoors, being a part of someone’s art journey. He will pose for Men Drawing Men on April 20, 2021.
Model Xavier: https://www.instagram.com/euroxavier/
Interviewer Shungaboy: https://www.instagram.com/shungaboy/
Music: "At The Shore" Kevin MacLeod (www.incomptech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0
BEING A NATURIST
Being a naturist, to me nudity in general is asexual, it's not a sexual thing. So I've never considered nudity to be, anything to be ashamed of or to be embarrassed by. To me being a naturist it's simply being in a state that brings us a little closer to our natural state of being. My friends know, I go to nudist colonies, I partake in nude 5k runs. It's just a natural part of life, to me. And it definitely helps in a craft such as life modeling.
WERE YOU RAISED AS A NATURIST?
No, I actually was raised in a pretty conservative family, nudity or sexuality were not really discussed. Probably about my teenage years, 16, 17, to just go to my father's farm and just sunbathe naked. It was simply just a natural thing for me to do.
As I grew older, I developed a lot of body image issues and some self-esteem issues. Like being on a modeling stand, you let all of your vulnerabilities out. They're all there for everyone to see. And it's kind of like meeting your demons, grabbing the bull by the horn. You just face the shortcomings that you might have, and you let them out, then it's take it or leave it.
I love the outdoors. I love nature. I love getting away from the city. Sun also helps me mentally and psychologically. I feel revived at the first signs of spring. I am an avid runner. I run a lot. I don't like to run, but, running helps me. I still have some body insecurities. I used to be very heavy. And running and yoga have been probably the most effective ways for me. So, I do run about three to four times a week.
It was about 10 years ago. I was approached by a friend if I would pose for his senior project. And so that was the first time when I actually saw my portrait on the wall on the exhibit and it felt pretty good! Later on, I went back to school and I've done two graduate programs, one in philosophy of art and the other one in art history. And in both of these cases, life modeling helped tremendously. I like this poster because it's from one of my probably biggest rewards. This was a poster for opening exhibition of a major painting by a major painter. So it was called Secrets. I do observe a lot while I'm on the stand and you kind of do this, whether you realize it or not, life modeling is a very meditative thing. People ask you all kinds of weird questions. When friends who find out this is what I do, they always have these questions. So what, what happens if you get excited? That never happens. This is the number one question I get asked.
SOMEBODY’S ART JOURNEY
I cannot do art. I cannot paint or draw. I lack to talent or patience. So to me entering like almost the full-time life-model life has become a, it gave me a feeling of being a part of something much, much, much bigger. I felt like I was being a part of somebody's art journey, the closest to art making experience that I will ever probably get. I always joke that I will pose for as long as I can. And as old as I am, as long as there are people who are willing to draw my wrinkles and they all have open invitation to whatever the nursing home I'll be at!