Giving Context To My Work

Referring back to my proposal the whole intention of this project was to reach out to people who weren’t gay, connecting with them on some level, as the that would be a much larger audience to reach out to. Because of this I have chosen subjects that aren’t typically linked with homosexuality. This being a tactic that the artist Felix Gonzalez-Torres used in his own work. Although Torres created work on the topic of homosexuality, he didn’t want it to be an easy target for anti-gay viewers to dispute, on the grounds that it depicted iconography of homosexuality or typically homoerotic imagery, such as Robert Mapplethorpe’s work or Touko Laaksonen’s (more commonly known as Tom of Finland) sketches of gay fantasies. An example of one of Laaksonen’s tamer sketches is shown below. But because Torres used sexually neutral objects, such as his installation of two clocks (below), he was able to infiltrate the subconcious of anti-gay viewer.

Tom of Finland

Torres ClocksBecause I have chosen to depict objects that appear unrelated to homosexuality, as a way of avoiding anything stereotypically ‘homosexual’, I have to frame the viewers understanding of the work to some extent. I don’t want to explain my reasoning behind the work to intensely, because I want the viewer to read interpret it freely. This being said I will have to give them some context to my work, at least enough so they understand what has informed my work.

I believe this can be achieved with a text panel next to the work. I don’t want it to steal focus, so I will keep the information concise with just a line summarising each key point. My work is heavily reliant on the viewers interpretation and perhaps they won’t get everything because the concept has been abstracted quite a bit. But at least if the text panel can inform the viewer that this work has been created in response to discrimination against the LGB community, they will make the association between this topic and the objects they see everyday such as the keys and insects. The result may only be small but at least this way these issues can begin to invade the consciousness of the masses.

Below is the text I haven written to summaries my whole project:

“Far and wide the lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) community face varying degrees of discrimination and abusive attacks. In some cases cultures are encouraged to express hatred towards this community, offering no protection from local authorities and likening them to pedophiles and ‘perverted sum’. Within a relatively more progressive society, public figures are making oppressive comments. People that could one day hold enough power to destroy the progression and equal rights acquired by this community.This work is a response to these issues, offering a window for the viewer to hypothesize about the way of life of others. It describes the fragility of this minority within society and the degrading perceptions some people have of them.”



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