Self-portrait Series, 2016
“Self-portrait Series” is inspired by science fiction and video games where one can assume new identities and travel through different spaces. Like my inspiration, I created an alternate reality photographing three female models dressed as myself in various spaces truthful and personal to my everyday.
In substituting myself with a woman, I am emancipated from being a man. In using models of different races, I am emancipated racially and ethnically. However, the models remain dressed in my clothes, representing myself as well as the heteronormative constraints of masculinity within cultures and society, impeding my natural desires of being feminine, queer and subversive. As well, clothing reflects one’s sense of comfort in conformity and individuality; inherent to humans, we all want to belong and to be understood. It is contradictions like these between expectations, desires, truth and actuality that blur my own reality, resulting in this same contrasting and dichotomous relation expressed in this work.
The images within this series also reference science fiction and a retro-futuristic aesthetic. For me, the future is synonymous to romanticism and hope. Futuristic notions and aesthetics are a familiar concept, and the more time proceeds, the more the present begins to fulfill preconceived thoughts of the future. Reality merges with fantasy and fiction that leads me to perceive those non-realities as reality.
In combination with more realist and banal type photos such as the photo in the bedroom, my own reality in space and time is intersected between the fantasy of myself as a woman and a ‘futuristic’ fiction of being in another reality where I am liberated from my inhibitions. Through the use of models, clothing, fiction, and space, an autobiographical discourse surrounding notions of identity, desire, gender, race, reality and alternate realities are invoked.