I In 1995, I shot this scene in a home studio in Highbury Hill, London. At that point I was in a liminal state by gender. I was moving from being perceived as female to being perceived as male, but I agreed that I was born into sex.
I did not switch I was not interested in moving from one anchor point to another. The space in between has always been a lot more interesting to me. However, this period felt like a turning point, revealing the ambiguity of the castle that always existed. I felt it needed documentation.
Throughout my life, I was afraid that I was not properly recognized as a woman by ordinary people and my lesbian community. Because of that fear, I pulled out the hair that grew on my chin. As soon as the character stood out, I pulled it out with tweezers. But I took part in the Drag Kings competition at the National Movie Theater and I thought it was a good time to accept my body because my partner at that time was closer to masculinity than my femininity.
I went to Italy for a month and let my beard grow for the first time. Intensely liberated. I felt like making a contract with myself. When I came back to London I kept it. This picture is important because it is ambiguous. Play with masculinity while posing with a beard, but the blue mascara on the facial hair and the makeup on the face still soften the shot. I felt accurate and honest about at what point in my life.
My portfolio is at the heart of my work: it's how I understand, react, and approach my differences. I was born with interstellar variation and developed asymmetrically at puberty. For example, one chest was much larger than the other.
For many years I hid it. I hid what made me different, handled years of abuse because it looks a bit different, a bit fat and doesn't follow. My mother was beautiful and gorgeous fashion model and I did not capture her. I've destroyed almost every photo that survived from that time because of the disgusting feeling.
Self portfolio was a way for others to see me when I saw me. It was not a narcissistic project. I didn't want to be more beautiful or attractive than others. But it was an attempt to restore the self and values that had been taken from me for years.
I have taken and photographed many pictures of my life, and many of them show me images that are absolutely destructive. My portfolio took a stance for myself and for people like me different from the standard. Because I'm the most topic of my job, but not pure. When people talk about self-portraits or confessions, they often have a significant advantage, as if they had self-indulgence or problems.
But I think the real question is why do you make yourself the subject of your art and what your goals are. Should I be indemnified? Do I need to pay attention? Because I have already gained a lot, I hope others like me understand that their differences are valuable, lonely, proud, unscrupulous, and do not need to follow.
Self-portraits have become popular among women, queer and minorities over time, from the last century Claude Cahun to today's Zanele Muholi. I think for us. I realize that individuals are political. This is our form of resistance.
Now I'm interested in queer photos and queer photographers. I don't know how deep or how long it will last. When the end of the year and we no longer celebrate Stonewall's 50th anniversary as a news month, will the media still make room for us? Does the gallery still show our work? Will the audience who does not queer still be interested? Try this space
• The work of the Dela Grace Volcano can be seen at Kiss My Genders in London's Hayward Gallery until September 8.
CV of Dela Grace Volcano
Born, born: Orange, California, 1957.
training: Master of Photography in San Francisco Art Institute and Photography Studies at Derby University.
effect : Angela Davis, Claude Kahun, James Baldwin, Lee Miller
Key Points: 'I met and sold a vintage hand-drawn print of one of my books, The Ceremony, to Lilly Wachowski, co-director of The Matrix. "
Low point: 'Rejected many times for art funding.'
Top tip: 'Sustainability pays.'