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Berlin pays homage to gay sex in public toilets

Berlin is a city that is well known for its tolerance and open-mindedness. So it should not be at all a surprise that the local LGBT museum (Schwules Museum) has inaugurated a new exhibition sponsored by Berlin's public transport service, celebrating gay sex in public restrooms.

Fenster zum Klo: Public Toilets, Private Affairs, features explicit photographs by Marc Martin. In an introduction to the show, the French photographer reveals that some of his earliest sexual experiences were in these thrilling urban spaces.

“These places, where men were constantly coming and going, were instrumental in my sexuality, aroused my desires and quenched my curiosity,” Martin writes. “In there, I also had the most unlikely, unexpected encounters.”

“Differences were blurred and otherwise separated cultures briefly mixed,” Martin continues. “Despite being disparaged as sleazy and dirty, they allowed for immediate, anonymous sexual contacts. They were a godsend to those who could not entertain at home and expose their sexual proclivities to the outside world.”

The exhibit has been officially sponsored by Berlin’s public transport service, Berliner Verkehrs-Gesellschaft. BVG even granted Martin access to public toilets in its subway stations that have been closed for decades.

“From poetry to pornography, his work bears witness to the generation of today, of a type of sexual interaction that has virtually disappeared now,” reads a description of Martin’s exhibit. “Glorious or shameful, our good old cottage toilet no longer needs to blush about its past.”

"Fenster zum Klo – Public Toilets, Private Affairs" runs until 5th February 2018, at the Berlin Schwules Museum - Lützowstraße 73.