a love letter
to queer intimacy
(work in progress)

On the sterilisation of Johannesburg gay pride in 1998, Steven Cohen – an artist and activist – wrote on a placard: “Give us your babies; what we can’t fuck, we eat!” It was intended as a provocative but ironic poke at what the mainstream thought of gay men in South Africa at the time — perverts. The gay community of Johannesburg, which consisted of mostly white gay men, reacted by donating money to children’s welfare charities — there was a strong desire to assimilate into heteronormative society, to be accepted by the mainstream.
Today, gay people enjoy successful careers, marriage, adoption — there is very little left differentiating the community from straight people. But this exists alongside queer shame. Queer people often do not assimilate into heteronormative society. Queer people are still viewed upon as the other. 
The mainstream peeks at queer intimacy through performance; as an outsider looking in at a curated . Oftentimes with objectifying and fetishising queer bodies – dehumanising them. 
This photo series set out to strip away performative aspects of queer culture, and offer a gaze into what it really means to be queer — to celebrate intimacy that is on the one hand so ‘ordinary’, but also the special ways in which intimacy manifests when you can truly be authentic; free from the expectations of mainstream values and norms.
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