Rossellini Finds Biodiversity a Sexy 'Green Porno'

  • "If I were an hamster," Isabella Rossellini ponders in a video about animal reproductivity. Photo: Gilles-Marie Zimmerman.

November 14, 2014

Cole Porter let us know that birds do it and bees do it, but seldom, if ever, has pop culture broached the sex lives of worms or bed bugs. Leave that to the inventive Italian-born beauty Isabella Rossellini. The actress and model brings her "Green Porno" show from the Sundance Channel to Pittsburgh on Nov. 21.

So what's the purpose of "Green Porno," originally video shorts she turned into a stage monologue? 

"I wanted people to laugh," Rossellini says. "They're basically entertainment pieces about science. A lot of people, if they haven't paid much attention in school to biology classes, they think everybody does it like we do it, one mommy and one daddy. But that's not the way it is." 

Despite Rossellini donning Muppet-like body suits to portray the animals herself, Rossellini takes science seriously. She is working on a masters degree in conservation and animal behavior. It's been a long time coming. She pursued internships with National Geographic early in her career, but then her modeling and acting work took off.

Rossellini says her work doesn't deal much with the dramatic species loss the world has seen since the 1970s. 

But, she says, just like the catastrophe that decimated dinosaurs, "We are the earth's catastrophe. Human beings have created so much pollution and climate change, loss of habitat that there is now again this precipitation of this mass extinction, which is really sad."

Photo of Isabella Rossellini out of costume by Andre Rau.