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On inconvenient tram seats, Czechoslovak vibrator and symbol of femininity...

Quick Confession - Designer of Vibrators and Trams, Anna Marešová: Woman is an Emotion!

Tereza Janatová
16.Jul 2018
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4 minutes

In the past the subject of sex toys and sex in general was an absolute taboo. We all knew what it was all about, but nobody said anything aloud. God forbid somewhere having a coffee with a girlfriend, keeping the voice down so that actually everyone would hear it all. Fortunately, with Anna Marešová you really can talk practically about everything. And if perhaps the guys lacked 'courage' to try love balls, there is still the tram, a blue tram.

When you hear ´Anna Marešová´, nowadays perhaps everyone will think of a tram or sex toys I would like to begin with the tram. Is it childhood love?

I am from Prague, so when it comes to trams I have a liking for them. And this year I was in South Bohemia; there is a narrow-gauge railway and it is actually of a very similar shape to a tram. That is where we went to a cottage when I was small and I liked it very much because it was like a little train. I think that that was precisely the time where my first love for it was born. Tram is an integral part of a city and it is very important what the tram looks like. It is mobile architecture, a calling card of the city.

Today's trams have several types of interiors. What would you say as a bit of criticism?

For example the seat. It is a kind of a gateway. They are often not comfortable. I feel that sometimes the trams are not designed with consideration for the user and the oldest trams are actually the most practical ones. They are light, so they are good for operation and at the same time have those fibreglass seats which get warm when the heating is on, are easy to maintain and so on. Unfortunately technical progress beat down practicality. On the other hand it is super that some trams are of low-floor design. Now I remember that I once wanted to give up my seat to let a lady sit down; she refused saying that she cannot sit down on a hairy seat. And that is wrong. We pay for this service and so we should have an option to use it to its full potential.

Funkcionalistická vila na prodej, Praha-západ
Funkcionalistická vila na prodej, Praha-západ, Okolí Prahy

So the 'blue tram´ builds on the past?

It is actually a re-jigged T3, which is an iconic tram from the 60´s by František Kardaus. There are elements not only from this tram, because it is not a replica or renovation, but it is a combination of new technologies and an old tram. The most interesting point about the tram will be the open rear area. There will be no windows. Windows will only be installed there for winter months. So it will be a tour tram, dark blue one, evoking a ship.

What is it like to design a tram?

The initial ideas and themes are joyful. Then when it comes down to some of the details it is sometimes a bit more difficult. It has to cover everything. But it is fine to watch it bit by bit, up to the final point where you see the entire whole. And when that happens, it is great pleasure.

When will that be?

Is it to be ready for this year's Designblok. That means the end of October.

In addition to the tram you have designed several sex toys. So if we talk about the preparations and their development, where is the difference?

I would like to say that it is very similar. There comes the idea, the task. There is some research. It is a good idea to set a clear path that you will follow. And then there is a specific design and that is elaborated in more detail. Then there is the production, part details. The tram as well as sex toys are, to me, subjects which over-reach into society.

Whether it is the trams or sex toys, everything must be tested. How does it work?

As for the tram those tests are only to be carried out because they will be done only when the tram is built, technical tests that is. The ergonomics were addressed; what supports are to be in the seats, to what height. The ergonomics are measured also in respect of a smallest adult person.  As regards sexual aids, for example in the case of love balls, I consulted a gynaecologist who recommends them. I made several prototypes in terms of size. Then we agreed on a specific one. As for the vibrator I consulted a lady who writes reviews on erotic aids. So I invited her to participate. And again it is about the ergonomics, about ease of use. In my opinion, when I compare it the process is very similar.

How is all of this perceived by the people close to you?

I have been moving in this for a long time, so to me it seems normal. So we usually talk about what is going on. What is new. And there is always quite a lot, so we have a lot to talk about.

Does your friend sometimes come for an advice?

My friends go straight to buy the love balls. One already bought them for her sister and mother, too.

How do you perceive the history of sex toys?

It is very interesting. Sex toys have actually been here from time immemorial. For example, the principle of love balls has been known already 500 BC. So it is no modern thing. In general, sex toys have always reflected perception of female sexuality in the given period of time. For example in the 1980s there a Czechoslovak vibrator was made, operated by the thick battery, made of a kind of red and white plastic. And it was precisely those plastics that were used in the kitchens at that time. And that also reflects that period. In the 90s there was an influx of stuff from Germany, it was naturalistic. It is nice to observe the developments. How everything is evolving.

What is for you a symbol of femininity?

Gentleness and strength. I see that when dealing with a certain situation we can leave out our ego. Gentleness is what is valuable. Woman is an emotion. I read somewhere that a woman is able to create a home from a house. And that´s what I like. 

Fast confession:

What is the biggest problem of Prague Public Transport?

Gosh, I don´t know. I cannot think of anything. I always first think of those seats in a night-time tram. Hairy ones.

How much would a tram designed by you cost?

Like a ride? Best if it were free.

Most bizarre means of transport you have been on?

I think Avia.

How many sex toys have you designed?


Your most favourite erotic toy?

Love balls.

What is the best thing about adult films?

Well perhaps that they are only for adults.

Who is your inspiration in the field of design?

From designers, Jasper Morrison, a British designer.

It is permissible for a woman to ask a man for a date first?

Perhaps it is permissible, but I think that it is better if it is the other way around.

Looking at a man what do you notice as the first thing?

Perhaps whether they are funny, what impression do they make.

How do men react to your work?

Differently in the case of trams than the sex toys. But in most cases positively.

You have said somewhere that a tram and erotic aids have a lot in common. What is it?

Well, that it is something that has to look well and work well.

With whom you would like to work together in future?

With the team, which I have, because it is simply superb.

What do you think is the biggest taboo at the moment?

I think that ageing…

How many hours a day to you spend by work and how many by entertainment?

Well, 80% work and 20% entertainment.
The interviewee asks the Editor:

What kind of breakfast did you have?

Today I only managed a coffee...
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