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Marisa Papen

Marisa PapenMarisa Papen, born on April 30th, 1992 in Limburg is an artist, activist and naturalist known for posing nude in unconventional and controversial locations.

After high school, she studied marketing. In 2015 she started working as a model and was photographed for Playboy in Germany in 2017, in Mexico with Ana Dias during 2019 and in Portugal in 2016.

In 2016 she published a calendar in which she addressed the problem of plastic in the ocean. A year later, Papen was making headlines all over the world when she was photographed naked at Egyptian temples.

Marisa's photographs and videos made headlines around the world when she was imprisoned after posing naked at the Karnak Temple Complex near the Egyptian city of Luxor.

The Belgian model has been posing nude for a series of photos in 50 countries over the last several years, but by her own admission Egypt was the first place where she found herself in a sticky situation.

Having posed naked, with the pyramids in the background, she was later arrested for not first getting permission from the authorities.

But her arrest only came after the photo shoot, which had taken place despite the presence of a security guard, who Papen claims was "happy to look the other way" once he was given a bribe.

Marisa PapenIt was when two young men arrived and asked what she was doing, that she explained things started to get risky.

"We tried to explain to them that we were making art with the highest respect for Egyptian culture." she told them.

"But they could not see a connection between nudity and art. In their eyes it was pornography or something like that."

She said she and the photographer bribed the two men $20 and carried on. But when they arrived at Luxor, where they planned to shoot by the temple complex at Karnak things got really tricky, as there were so many security guards.

However, undeterred, they decided to hide until the temple was closed and started the photo shoot. But this time they were not so lucky.

Papen said: "You can guess what happened next. Busted, once again. And yes, this time we were in some serious trouble."

"Without being able to converse with each other, I made it clear to Jesse that he had to delete the images if he saw the tiniest opportunity."

She said the police did believe their story that they had taken no images and were simply "testing the light."

Instead the photographer was told to strip down as the police searched for a second SD card, but did not find anything.

Papen said they were taken to a number of places and were put into jail cells filled with other men.

"I knew that a prison in Egypt looks slightly different then in Belgium or any Westernized country but I had no idea what to expect before actually going in." she said.

Marisa Papen"The first cell we encountered was packed with at least 20 men, some were passed out on the floor, some were squeezing their hands through the rails, some were bleeding and yelling."

"I had never seen something like this before in real life. Jesse kept telling me, 'Marisa don't look' but there was no way not to look."

After a few hours behind bars they were brought before a judge, where she said they tried to play the part of "stupid tourists."

"Our judge was browsing with his big thumbs through these books that looked as old as the pyramids. Eventually, he gave us a warning and told us never to do something so foolishly shameful ever again. We nodded simultaneously."

Despite the close call, they retrieved the photographs using special software and after leaving the country, published them on her website.

In 2018, she posed nude for photographs in the Vatican and in Jerusalem. A year later, she was also arrested for taking nude shots inside the Hagia Sophia Mosque in Istanbul.

The Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor is seeking up to seven years in prison on obscenity charges for Papen's poses in and near the Hagia Sophia on a 2018 trip to Turkey.

The model also faces charges of "insulting symbols of state sovereignty" posing nude on a Turkish flag, after which a warrant was issued for her arrest.

Posing naked next to famous landmarks is pretty much Marisa Papen's bread and butter. The Belgian model has become famous for her outlandish displays, and has sparked outrage once again in Jerusalem.

Marisa PapenShe was pictured in the nude in front of the Wailing Wall - also known as the Al-Buraq Wall, which is the holiest place Jews are allowed to pray, sitting right in front of Temple Mount.

Papen is from Belgium and describes herself as a 'free-spirited, wildhearted expressionist.' She's known for posing naked, and has been in trouble more than a few times for it.

Marisa is not on Instagram, but has a photo album on her website called 'Instagram uncensored'. Due to the nature of her photos, it's likely that Instagram management wouldn't take kindly to her bare-naked shots.

In regards to the most recent incident, Marisa has written a blog post called The Wall of Shame on her website about it. Her take is this: "First of all, don't judge a book by its title."

"This purely implies the shame you, dear reader, (perhaps) will project on me because I have done something so disrespectful, I should burn in hell."

"I know my mailbox is about to fill up with threats and angry lectures again - to all the people typing down their furiosity right now, save your energy - I don't even open them"

"I knew that I wanted to push the bounderies of religion and politics even further. Breaking down the walls that have been built to keep all our wandering souls on this planet somehow under control."

In other words, showing my personal religion in a world where freedom is becoming a very luxurious thing."

Marisa PapenThe photos were taken by Mathias Lambrecht on a road trip through Israel. The pair went from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, to the Dead Sea and back.

They have sparked comments online as well as from prominent religious figures. Western Wall Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovich said:

"This is an embarrassing incident, grave and lamentable, which offends the sanctity of the site and the feelings of those who visit the holy places."

"In the current artistic and intellectual environment of hypersensitive political correctness, It seems impossible to use the nude human body as a voice but Marisa found her way. She turns this cultural complexity into simplicity - she calls her bare skin her superhero suit."

Marisa started expressing herself in front of the camera in 2015, since then Marisa has been pushing boundaries, as much with society's as her own.

She uses our culture and our weak spot for beauty as a tool in a fight to restore the imbalances upon this earth.

She challenges the mind and raises questions all over the world by emerging her body in the most controversial environments or in the opposite - the most natural wonders on this planet.

Even though she shook up the world when she shared the image of herself lounging, in a pure state of ease in front of the Western Wall, her main perspective was to inspire people with ideas and visions on a political, spiritual and philosophical level.

Marisa has an undying love for the earth and that's where her ferocious spirit finds the power to speak up for those without a voice, animals and humans alike.

Willing to put both body and mind at risk for this goal. She aims to create a lasting impact by showing the undeniable beauty of this planet.

Marisa PapenThis dare-devil Playboy model whose stunts have caused outrage around the world has again plunged to new depths - to swim with man-eating sharks.

Marisa Papen dived naked off the coast of Hawaii to get up close and very personal with the terrifying marine predators. Her shocking shark shoot took place at the end of summer off the island of Oahu.

And she revealed her risky photoshoots in the past were far more frightening than coming face-to-face with the sharks. She hoped to challenge the taboos surrounding sharks as well as nudity taboos.

The shark shoot took place at the end of summer off the island of Oahu and the images were used for her Earth Family Calendar.

"It was one of the most peaceful experiences of my life being with the sharks. Being in their presence, I felt complete serenity. People ask me if I was scared, but actually, I was not scared at all."

"They were Galapagos sharks. There were also a couple of reef sharks around and one tiger shark that swam up to us, we didn't get to photograph him though, he was in and out."

Papen said she hoped to challenge taboos by making people rethink their ideas about nudity and sharks. "The message is all about breaking stigmas and taboos, nudity is seen as bad in our society, and so are sharks."

"Over the years, sharks have gained a bad reputation because of the film industry. I wanted to challenge viewers by looking at these magnificent creatures with a different eye."

Marisa said she meditated before taking to the water. When asked how she prepared mentally for being in the water nude with the sharks, she said: "Before I jumped off the boat, I was meditating and preparing myself to tap into their energy.

Marisa Papen"I had no clue what that would feel like since I had never swum with them before. I wasn't going to wear any goggles because I didn't want to be able to read their movements, I just had to trust I would be okay."

"After a couple of dives I realised that their energy is actually so subtle, they are so at one with the ocean, I could barely feel their vibration. We dived around 20 times in the span of around 45 minutes. We didn't want to bother them too long."

Marisa founded her own non-profit which she named after our unity; Earth Family. A vision for equality. A platform used to open minds and hearts with art as a bridge.

To free all beings, to stretch their circle of compassion, to re-establish their deep relationship with the Earth, to normalize the body and to see their skin as a sacred container for their spiritual bodies.

"Over the last 5 years, my bare feet have wandered freely across human borders, they explored the corners of religion and reached for the depth of our oceans. In a constant flow, as fluid as water, my path was randomly laid out by my deep curiosity. Unfixed and unpredictable as it was."

"I had one constant in my life, by my side, at all times, Mother Nature. My healer. My everlasting source of beauty and inspiration. She made me shape-shift and transform into states that seemed 'not me' from afar but from within, it was."

"I embraced her wisdom and released fixed ideas, I was carrying around. There is way more light when you are not bound. In my open palms, a sea of time streamed as I let go of past versions of me."

"Around the end of 2019 - having this abundance of time on my hands - I sensed my fingers pointing my spirit in the direction of this healer-energy. So, I founded my own non-profit; Earth Family."

Marisa Papen"A vision for equality. A platform to open minds and hearts with art as a bridge. To free all beings, to widen our circle of compassion, to re-establish our deep relationship with the Earth, to normalize the body and to see our skin as a sacred container for our spiritual bodies."

"Earth Family operates as a creative agency, producing in-house art/activism but also lending its services and knowledge for free to other ethos-aligned non-profits so their message/work can reach more souls."

Speaking in the language of art, the Earth Family artist network is carefully curated - they are some of the best in their field, they have a huge heart for the planet and are craving to activate minds & generate awareness.

Earth Family compensates artists fairly for their commitment, visions, talents and crafts.


Earth Family

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Marisa Papen



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