Het Parool, 2023-04-06

Deze UvA-studente liet zich in bed filmen met schrijver Michel Houellebecq: ‘Ik voel me kunstenaar’

Lorianne van Gelder, Het Parool, 2023 April 6

Original in Dutch

Translation to English

This UvA student allowed herself to be filmed in bed with writer Michel Houellebecq: ‘I feel like an artist’

On a cabinet in her tiny dorm room is Immanuel Kant’s fistful of Critique of Pure Reason (1781). The washing machine in the bathroom runs overtime, the sound sometimes drowning out her thoughts, says Jini Jane (the stage name of Jini van Rooijen). A large mirror next to her bed, and a drawer underneath with all kinds of lingerie might give away what Jini’s name is for a side job. But otherwise she is an average student of philosophy at the University of Amsterdam, in a modest room in Amsterdam- Zuidoost.
Yet Jini (23) is not an average student at all. She earns her money with an OnlyFans account, on which she shares homemade porn movies. For $20 a month, men can view her content. She makes a good living from it, she says. That afternoon, she will perform in a music video by Goldband. The band was looking for a girl who is not a prude. They soon ended up with Jini.
Previously, she was the “left-wing girl” who wanted to sleep with a “right-wing guy”. Right-wing conservative FvD philosopher Sid Lukkassen responded to the call on Geenstijl. It did not come to sex, Lukkassen felt humiliated, the film was made anyway, by Stefan Ruitenbeek and Kate Sinha of art critics platform Kirac (Keeping It Real Art Critics, see box). The scandal that followed made all the media headlines.
Jini Jane sits down on a bench in her room, her voice drawling, it’s still early.

How did you get involved with Kirac?
“I grew up in Rotterdam and came to Amsterdam for a boyfriend. That boyfriend was a fan of Kirac. I then went to gigs of theirs as often as possible to get in touch with Stefan (Ruitenbeek, ed.). I was incredibly fan of them, and very touched by what they made. I didn’t know it was possible to be so honest with people. They tell the truth about what they see. I wanted to be able to do that, too.”

Now Jini is embroiled in the riot surrounding French author Michel . With Kirac colleague Ruitenbeek, she went to Paris, initially to organize a gangbang for on her OnlyFans account. What follows is a rather complex case, about which her lawyer won’t allow her to say anything more. But it boils down to the following: Houellebecq and his wife Qianyum Lysis Li had seen Honeypot and wanted to do something similar. Jini agreed, but they agreed to sign a contract that would allow Jini to post it on her OnlyFans as well. Later, Houellebecq came to Amsterdam to sleep with several young women. The writer regretted his participation, filed a lawsuit to stop the “defamatory images” but lost, twice. 

Why do you make porn?
“I started once because I noticed it was liberating to make sex scenes. I wanted to find out why it feels good.”

Have you always been so open about sex?
“Yes. My parents are kind of hippies, not so much that I was exposed to what they did in their private lives, but they were very open to me. I had a lot of freedom and autonomy as a child, and I could always discuss anything with my parents. They divorced, I’m an only child and they never remarried, so I had full-time one-on-one attention.”

What does sex mean to you?
“I’ve had a lot of sex since I was 16. I think I derive a lot from it, that it’s expression. Before I decided to make art and movies, sex for me was a way to express my curiosity and put myself on the line.”

Sex often involves power.
“I was never so aware of that. It wasn’t until I was accused of transgressive behavior at my sorority and expelled that realization sank in. In the end, it was about a boy who felt rejected, but it was a grim situation. Before then, I had egalitarian ideas about being in a room together and doing it together. I had a lot of sex with random people. That sexual power exists, I didn’t understand at that time.”

Would you call yourself exhibitionist?
“My mother was once called that I am exhibitionist, although she meant it lovingly. But I myself don’t think I’m that exhibitionist at all because I don’t get horny when people see me naked. I think being naked is normal, I think it’s normal for people to see me. I don’t feel tension or shame when I get fucked and I film that, whereas people who are really exhibitionist do.”

What is OnlyFans to you?
“It’s a really cozy place and it’s good that it’s there. All those pervy men who follow me just want to be seen. When I interact with men, I often have fun conversations. Making porn is just an interesting exploration of how I want to have sex, what I get excited about at the time and how to film something original, even though the platform is called limitations. On OnlyFans, you are not allowed to just walk around naked in a public square, or fuck in a publicly accessible park. If you do, they take it down. You are not allowed to use objects that are not meant for it, no cucumbers for example. I’d like to try more, but then I’ll have to build my own platform someday.”

Do you feel like an artist, porn actress or sex worker?
“I feel like an artist because my OnlyFans is part of a broader project, it’s a means of making things possible. The beginning of the Houellebecq story is that Stefan and I went to Paris to arrange a gangbang and Stefan made a film about my quest. So it’s woven into the bigger picture. Sex work I don’t do, because I don’t have sex with men for money. I make porn with men I choose myself and make money from that. There are some men who would like me to have sex with them for money, but I draw a line there.”
“I’m not on a mission to liberate people sexually. I don’t think people who are prudish should be less prudish. Or that women who don’t want their pussy photographed should. If you’re open about it yourself, I especially hope you don’t let it scare you. But other than that, I don’t think I can accomplish much except make art.”

Surely there have been some casualties in your quest for art by now. Sid Lukkassen, Michel Houellebecq. How do you see that?
“About Houellebecq I’m not allowed to say anything. And I don’t see Sid as a victim. He found it hard to be rejected. It’s a theme I often see: you have an expectation of a sexual experience and when it doesn’t come true, it leads to a violent wave of emotion. But I can’t do favors based on that.”

Are you still going to graduate?
“I really need to finish my studies. All that’s left is a thesis, but I don’t know what it’s about yet. Probably something with love, and sex.”


What is Kirac?
Keeping It Real Art Critics (Kirac) was founded in 2016 by artist Stefan Ruitenbeek. With his partner archaeologist and philosopher Kate Sinha and artist Tarik Sadouma, he makes postmodernist, critical, provocative films about the art world, subsidies and all sorts of topics in society that anger them. For example, they “uncancelled” Julian Andeweg, accused of sexual violence, and Sinha and Ruitenbeek were previously accused of being sexist and racist after which a meeting at. Sadouma, by the way, recently left the group, according to de Volkskrant, because he would not support dealing with Houellebecq.
The same newspaper described the collective in 2018 with the headline
‘Where these art critics enter, the knees buckle’.