DADT: We Have To Give Them Hope

DADT: We Have To Give Them Hope

Photography by:  Jeff Sheng, Los Angeles

Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell is a deeply touching series of portraits by Jeff Sheng, photographs of gay men and lesbians serving in the military, all of them in uniform and with their faces obscured in some way, by a hand, a door frame or by darkness.  The portraits are pervaded by a sense of lonely sadness and isolation.

Mr. Sheng has described his subjects, identified only by first names that are pseudonyms, as people who “didn’t want to risk their careers, but who wanted to take some kind of stand.”  Earnest and passionate about his work, Mr. Sheng said he struggles to avoid being heavy-handed as an artist.  “I merge a fight for social equality with photography, but I’m always trying to figure out how to do it intelligently,” he said.

Bright Eyes: First Day of My Life

Slide Show: DADT/We Have To Give Them Hope

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Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera

Exposed: Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera

Exposed is a photographic collection presently on exhibition at London’s Tate Modern Gallery, which offers a fascinating look at pictures made on the sly, without the explicit permission of the people depicted.  With photographs from the late nineteenth century to present day, the pictures present a shocking, illuminating and sometimes witty perspective on iconic and taboo subjects.  Exposed presents 250 works by celebrated artists and photographers, including Weegee, Guy Bourdin, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Philip Lorca DiCorcia, Walker Evans, Robert Frank, Nan Goldin, Harry Callahan, Lee Miller, Helmut Newton and Man Ray.

The United Kingdom is now the most surveyed country in the world, fostering an obsession with voyeurism, privacy laws, freedom of media, and surveillance, images captured and relayed on camera phones, YouTube or reality TV.  Much of Exposed focuses on surveillance, and the issues raised are particularly relevant in the current climate, with debates raging around the rights and desires of individuals, terrorism and the increasing availability and use of surveillance.  Exposed confronts these issues and their implications head-on.

Exposed at Tate Modern: Sandra Phillips on Celebrity Photography

Exposed: Richard Gordon on Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera

Slide Show: Exposed/Voyeurism, Surveillance and the Camera

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