Strangers, 2005-2006

My identity crisis occurred rather late. At twenty-three and a half, to be accurate. I had to confront the issue, and I wanted to do so through the use of photography. Every time I photographed, I would be liberated in steps. Therefore this project came up. The procedure was simple: go to strangers’ places and take photographs of us, acting as if we were in a relationship. That way, I thought I could deal with the incessant interrogations on my sexuality and my seemingly hopeless shyness. Maybe it is, as someone remarked, “an elaborate come-out plan”. Each image is an obscure statement, but as a whole they may be able to create a clearer vision.

These are men I would not have met without doing this project. They were strangers who invited me in their apartments and let me photograph us. I met some of them through the Internet, others at bars, and some are acquaintances of people I know or of past sitters.
Visiting unknown private space is always fascinating. Photographing myself in the space with its occupant is just surreal. It remained unknown to me what was on the sitter’s mind during the shoot.
Each time triggered affection towards the stranger (at least I tried to feel so). At times the physical and psychological distance between us seemed immense. Sometimes I felt a close connection to the sitter. The shoots went silently, quickly, and rather awkwardly, but interaction was always there. Perhaps, no matter how instantaneous and subtle it was, we were creating some sort of relationship.

This Project is now completed. Special thanks to all the sitters.