Qui sont les furries, ces étranges créatures mi-hommes mi-peluches ?
These anthropomorphism fans who think they are bisounours subject of a documentary currently visible to the Museum of Modern Art in Paris, where they will be present Sunday in flesh and hair. Deciphering the phenomenon "furry" by the filmmakers.
It is not always easy to identify. Some are content to display the image of an anthropomorphic animal on their Facebook pages. Other running around with cat ears or a fox's tail. Others, finally, practice "fursuit" - complete disguise - and attempt excursions to the public space to the delight of children who, seeing those big tumble doggies and other vixens of space, take them for mascots Disney.
These are the "furries" (or "furs" or "fur" in French): an underground community born in the 1980s that grew wider with the emergence of the Internet. Present in the United States, Canada and Europe (1), furries have opted for an alternative existence by identifying with a totem animal. At major international gatherings, waddle away from humming "I want to be cat" Pow Wow group, they organize parties frenzied backdrop of electro music.
Alain Della Negra Artists and Kaori Kinoshita followed these strange creatures where they are most numerous and most active: the United States. From this meeting was born a disturbing documentary, The Lair (2009). The latter is currently presented to the Modern Art Museum of Paris under Asides the exhibition, which offers young artists to exhibit one of their works, along with some selected pieces from the museum collection. Alain Della Negra and Kaori Kinoshita, who organize Sunday, June 21 a meeting with the public, in the presence of some representatives of the furry community, returning to the phenomenon.
How to become a furry?
There motivations and lifestyles very different. What unites them is the attraction to anthropomorphic animals or simply to their representations. Some strongly identify with their totem animal, others are more attracted to the "furry art". Thus, the first action of a furry is the "commission" passed with a furry artist, responsible for shaping the "fursona," or character, described by Sponsor. On this basis, furries create themselves or make their costumes make them, again, by a specialized artist. However, only 20% wear a "fursuit" or full suit, which also is quite expensive (starting at several hundred dollars). Most so wear some accessories like earrings or a necklace ... In the US, they are "thoroughly" and also more freedom: some will even work with their tails!
Are the Furies artists?
They are all amateurs, drawings, especially manga and comics. Among the artists, there are stars, odds ... and even auctions that are organized in the "conventions", the name given to international gatherings of furries. There is a crude art side and outsider who were very interested us. Maybe we discovered Henry Darger, like the man who draws only mermaids with incredible mythology around it.
How is this community appeared?
With the development of internet, as early as 1980. The first role models were cartoons like King Leo, from the manga of Osamu Tezuka (aired in the 1960s, Ed) or Robin Hood (which dates from 1973 and where malicious fox portrays the hero, Ed). We have discovered by chance via the virtual world Second Life, we had invested in the framework of our previous documentary (The cat, the reverend and the slave, 2010, Ed). There was a lot of avatars with animal heads: it was furries! Second Life is out of fashion, but they are very active on social networks, forums and discuss their even have a specialized Wikipedia (WikiFur).
Are left this approach?
It was long. Furries are very suspicious of the media. They regret that the whole community will be presented as obsessed and plusophile (sexually attracted lint, Ed). The issue of sexuality is very sensitive. When we wanted to go to the largest gathering of the furry world, Anthrocon in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, they were stung by an episode of the TV series Crime Scene Investigation. We decided to go incognito, with furries we knew, the idea of filming did they. But it was quickly grilled, because they had bought rabbit ears in the corner of the costume shop, because we did not have the attitude. The way to play a character, the itches that last 10 minutes ... We looked lost. Fortunately, when they knew, they accepted us and we were able to do a lot of interviews.
These are plants in your documentary. The voice of the furries is the only one that can hear and immersion is quite disturbing. Was that the objective?
We see people who seem perfectly normal to talk about them so incredible, as animals. But when they describe their pet, fursona, they still talk about them. This can evoke a psychoanalysis, this way of recognizing its weaknesses, to question the construction of identity. What interests us is the disorder that exists between reality and fiction. And how the viewer will be located relative to it.