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Tuesday, 16 February 2010 02:00

Asking For It

By  Alex Brew

Image Gallery

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I want images that explore those skewed power dynamics between men and women that make objectifying men so difficult. I approach men in public places - outside offices, pubs, cafes and gentlemen's venues often in London's square mile. I sometimes ask them to fully or partially undress in a more private space - an alleyway, a car park, or back at their place or mine. The vulnerability of both myself and the men in the images comes into sharp focus as a negotiation between the sexes begins and power blurs.The work has been described as "beyond uncomfortable, something closer to unbearable" (Sandra Erbacher, New Noise Arts) and "confrontational" (Marysia Zalewski, academic, in The International Feminist Journal of Politics - Routledge).

The images show both domestic and private scenes of nudity bringing to mind a close relationship or one-night-stand - yet these men are strangers or acquaintances. No sex is on offer, no money exchanged. As the project went on, I wrote notes about it that became snippets to accompany the images. They were stabs at getting my head round what was happening to me that year. They masquerade as curatorial notes but are intensely personal. Each time I exhibit I tinker with these notes. They never seem quite right. A definite stand on the power relations between men and women never comes. I shift. Question.
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1 comment

  • Comment Link Mehita Friday, 28 May 2010 02:00 posted by Mehita

    Last Friday (21 May 2010) I heard Alex talking about her experiences in creating this series of photographs - so thought-provoking and insightful. The images are so courageous... and I really love how they show so many different shades of vulnerability in the men portrayed...

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