This series of pictures were made in collaboration with transgender people. The photographs were taken so that emphasis would be placed on the position of the viewer in relation to the person depicted in the photograph. The subject, according to the viewer’s perspective, appears to be upside down. However, the photographs are not upside down – it is the perspective from which the pictures were taken that creates this illusion.
In 2007, when I made these pictures, I wanted to draw a parallel between the image that is seen and the way that transgender people were widely perceived in society at that time. I wanted to draw attention to the fact that the way that transgender people were being ‘seen’ was only one of many possible viewpoints, and as such, should not be taken as a definitive interpretation of reality.
The use of fabrics and exotic backgrounds in these pictures was a way to realise the telling of a different story to the more usual representations of transgender people – a way of presenting transsexual embodiment as magnificent and desirable.
Photographs made with negative film and printed as C-type colour photographs, 100cm x 125cm. 5 photographs in the series.