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Five London Photographers Explore Gender Identity And Lifestyle - ArtLyst Article image

Five London Photographers Explore Gender Identity And Lifestyle

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New exhibition to run alongside Fringe! Gay Film Fest

Facing You brings together five London-­‐based photographers whose work explores the notion of queer alongside gender in terms of identity and lifestyle, whilst providing a study into the artist and the medium’s role in the representation of any subject’s personal identity. Rather than simply iterating the existence of the sitter or seeking approval from the viewer, these works actively explore the visual language of gender and sexuality and question the nature of its key signifiers and their origins. If gender categories are a construct, what is deemed to be masculine and feminine?

Asa Johannesson’s practice seeks to explore the photographic portrait’s mediation of self-­‐image and gender. Recent work has predominantly focused on masculinity as a form of self-­‐expression. English boy Jacob, who identifies as transgender, nostalgically conjures the artist’s childhood tomboy persona.

Alex Grace in her work 'Untitled Project' explores how people's sexuality and gender identity influences the way in which they symbolically style themselves. The project remains untitled because Alex does not wish to use labels or assign people to groups in which they may feel uncomfortable.

Christa Holka’s practice focuses on documenting the communities in which she exists. From portraits of friends and peers, to images of her every day life, her work is a living record exploring how new forms of archiving have affected story-­‐telling, personal narrative, memory, identity, self-­‐representation and art practice.

In 2010 Ryan Riddington attended a workshop in Crete entitled 'Utopia and Nature', hosted by Athens School of Fine Art. Instead of reading the suggested text by Henry David Thoreau, 'Walden; or, Life in the Woods', Riddington chose to make his own work related to performance, sexual politics and space, resulting in 'Walk', a contemplation of cruising culture (image above).

Jacob Love is drawn to spaces or events that enable human expression to flourish beyond everyday cultural structures. His work explores the idea that ‘queer’ is not a single act that positions a subject as different ‘in relation’ to something else, but a continuum of emotion, a spiritual and psychological process that celebrates the notion of difference in and of itself.


All exhibited works are for sale, for a price list and related enquiries please email Gemma Rolls-­‐Bentley: gemmarollsbentley@gmail.com. A proportion of all sales will be donated to Gendered Intelligence, for more information please visit  www.genderedintelligence.co.uk


Fringe! Gay Film Fest runs 12th-­‐15th April across a variety of venues. For full programme details please visit: www.fringefilmfest.com

Facing You is curated by Liz Helman & Gemma Rolls-­‐Bentley.

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