I’ve just returned from helping to run the Thai chapter of this international arts and advocacy project, in which HIV+ve participants photograph their lives. This is the seventh city the project has worked in to challenge the stigma of HIV.
Here’s a preview of some of the work which will be appearing on the project website: http://throughpositiveeyes.org/
‘Remorseless’ is the word that comes to mind looking through Jo’s 2500 images. His documentary self-portraits are unflinching but full of humour and style.
The story of a transformation but also a love story. Her partner uses the lights to sculpt her body and performance as she rehearses at home.
Joe is the lightning struck man. Divided but full of an electric power. He has made brave, powerful and very sexy images of the disability affecting the left half of his body. He employs tape, fruit, mirrors and framing to explore his sidedness.He also draws in other divisions in his life: his Buddhist monk father and his own Christianity.
No and Aoi
Their work sits together as a story of love and companionship in adversity. We see the cycle of their methadone treatment but they also challenge the international stereotype of the chaotic drug abuser. We see the care they have for each-other, their dogs and No working at her embroidery.
Their playfulness, style and humor pervades many images. Aoi uses light and shadow to reflect on his time in prison. Note the tattoo of the prison watchtower on his leg. Even before taking up the camera he has been writing his story on his own body.