WE ARE NOT A SCANDAL AND NEITHER ARE YOU
this artwork consists of 6 portraits; they are all 6 x 9 inches in size and printed on glossy photographic paper.
the portraits are of girls at my school who have questioned their sexuality. i wanted to photograph this topic, because i am passionate about creating activist art and this is a way to show my support as an ally to the queer community by contributing to the movement against homophobia.
each girl chose the colour on the lgbtq+ flag that they wanted to represent; this is why the photos are arranged vertically. all of the photos were shot on the school premises, so the backgrounds are easily recognisable to other students at my school, as the messages of the artwork are primarily meant for them.
heteronormativity is the micro- and macro-level assumption that all people are heterosexual, because heterosexuality is the “normal” state of human being. it is a huge problem in our society that leaves the lgbtq+ community feeling unnatural and disregarded. it is especially bad in a traditional all-girl high school where rumours, gossip and prejudice walk between us in the corridors; having the audacity to be anything other than straight can be seen as something scandalous.
the first message of the artwork is for people who perpetuate this belief, challenging them to rethink their attitude towards sexuality by showing them that queer people are just that. people, not stories to entertain their friends with. the second message is for people who may be questioning their sexuality and are confused about their feelings, because of the homophobia and heteronormativity they have always been exposed to. one of the aims of this artwork is to offer them comfort and support by showing them that what they are feeling is normal, they shouldn’t have to feel ashamed about it and they are not alone.