Former “Playboy” model Marisa Papen posed naked at the entrance of Hagia Sofia and triggered an outrage. The 25-year-old wore a black burka when she entered the former Church and Mosque that is now a Museum.
For the sake of photo-shoot, she lifted the burka and exposed that she wore no underwear.
The picture was a protest against the “tyranny of religion” Papen posted on her Instagram account with the title “Hagia Sofia – Praying for Equality.”
She wrote in her blog that she and her photographer were waiting for a guide coming with a group to start “telling his story and then the photo-shoot was a matter of time.”
“It was a symbolic move against the tyranny of religion,” Papen wrote.
She has been known for showing off her naked body at religious or controversial sites.
In 2017 she landed in jail after posing naked in front of monuments in Egypt. The photo-shoot was perceived as an insult to the tradition of the country.
Last June she posed naked in front of the Wailing Wall, one of the most holy site of Judaism.
She describes herself as “free-spirited and wild-hearted expressionist.”
However, the photo-shoot in Hagia Sofia was apparently not just a spontaneous “protest ” action as Papen and her photographer made a series of naked photos in Istanbul and Cappadocia for an eye wear company.
About the photo-shoot in Hagia Sofia, Papen said that there were security cameras everywhere and very many people, including guards.
And this made some Greek media claim that the photo-shoot took place with “Turks’ tolerance.”
Hagia Sofia is the ultimate symbol of Greek Orthodoxy. The Byzantine Church was turned into a mosque after the Ottomans conquered Istanbul in 1453 and has been since the early 1930’s.