Getting Some Naked Body Painting In Times Square

On a sunny Wednesday afternoon in late July, a group of including myself assembled in Manhattan. We prepared to get naked for one of the few times public nudity is allowed in NYC: for a live art exhibition!
We, FKK, had partnered up with Andy Golub for a group body painting session at the outer edges of Times Square, 53rd and Broadway. Ten people participated, including a guy who offered in the crowd.
Overall the day went very well, but not without its fair share of trouble from city officials, police officers and security guards. First some people came over claiming the footpath we were on was their property (it wasn’t), so Andy had to deal with them. Then we’d some plainclothes police officers come over, crying and demanding that I set my clothes on.
I just kind of stared and continued to get painted. After verifying they were really policemen, Andy retrieved some records he carries with him, for situations just in this way. They calmed down and began reading a letter which explains that nudity is entirely legal in NYC if it is part of an exhibit or show.
This letter also says he has express permission from NYPD to do his body painting. They said “acceptable” and left us alone. That is not a one time occurrence for Andy, who gets bothered and harassed all the time while doing his live body paintings, despite the fact that he has permission and that it is 100% legal.
Body Painting with FKK by Andy Golub, photo by Dave Hoffman
There was a crowd of onlookers at all times, but in this region, it was much tamer than when I got body painted in the centre of Times Square. Individuals honed in a little too closely at times, but it was small enough to control.
We took off our tops to start, Andy painted, and then we continued to take off the rest. It’s the first summer that Andy has painting naked folks in the daytime.
He previously had an agreement with the city to only paint models in g strings until sundown. With a brand new attorney, they managed to do away with this unfair deal, and today he can paint naked people at any time of day (which was always legal).
Once we were all painted, we took a slow walk down to the more active part of Times Square, weaving through the swarms of folks. We stopped for a few pic ops, flashes together in front of a parking garage, a Starbucks window, and other areas. The coffee shop patrons appeared happy to see us.
The reactions were mostly favorable. I thought it was awesome that we had such a varied group of models – fat, skinny, young, old, of different shapes, sizes and ethnicities. Nude (or nearly-naked) folks in naturist sex fest pics represent one appearance, one race, one body type. We want more diversity such as this!
I asked the models themselves for comments about the complete encounter, and here’s what they had to say:
“This was the creation of body art [while] speaking with, laughing with, flashes with, just having fun with the bunch. I’ve been a performer for quite a long time, and this is probably the most ecstatic and appreciative crowd I Have ever had. It was indescribably fun. I would do it again in a heartbeat.” Mr. Sandy

“As you may understand from my blog, I’m quite comfortable nude and I’ve been to numerous occasions that involved complete body painting, but doing it at Times Square brings this experience to another level. It took some time to get used to be in the center of attention of heaps of people, but the general atmosphere of enjoyment and encouragement made it simple to appreciate it! Clearly, many people were curious about what was occurring, and you could see all types of reactions but almost all were favorable.
Many people were surprised to find out it was totally legal. It was amusing to hear that even when people were baffled in the beginning, they immediately approved the event as soon as they heard the magic word ‘artwork’ – Why are we so attached to labels? Fortunately, some people detected another important factor of this body art occasion the models were of different ages and body complexions, which definitely boosted body recognition; and could there be any better place for that than Times Square? ” -Kirill
Nonetheless, not all the reactions were positive. Not long after the body painting, our good friend Maria received an anonymous letter. It was an appalling attack on her size and appearance. It read:
“Now the dust of the body painting high you were in is over its time someone told you the truth. Nobody said you were beautiful or which you seem fantastic because you didn’t. As a matter fact most individuals who saw your photos looked away in disgust. You paraded yourself as a nudist/model for the entire world to see; in reality, you were a sideshow act right from a 19th century carnival freak show.