Love, Sex, Lust? A Curated Selection for Valentines Day
Our newest publication of the list, In 'Look at me like you love me', Jess T. Dugan reflects on desire, intimacy, companionship, and the ways our identities are shaped by these experiences. In this highly personal collection of work, Dugan brings together self-portraits, portraits of individuals and couples, and still lifes, interwoven with diaristic writings reflecting on relationships, solitude, family, loss, healing, and the transformations that define a life. Dugan has long used photography to understand their own identity and to connect with others on a deeper level.
Published by MACK, 2022
One of our favourites from the last couple years- in 'Heaven is a Prison' by Mark McKnight describes a queer otherworld that is at once utopic and purgatorial – occupied by a solitary pair of copulating, Sisyphean protagonists that appear both liberated and bound by their intimacies and the severe expanse in which they are depicted.
Published by Loose Joints, 2020
Sakura Lust is the first monograph by Casper Kent. Shot over the course of a year – from the arrival of the first cherry blossom through the Japanese Autumn – during nights spent in ryokans and love hotels throughout Japan.
Published by Kawako Press, 2019
Lovers Ten Years On, Sunil Gupta. A new edition that expands upon Gupta's previous work documenting queer couples. In 1984 Sunil Gupta’s first long term relationship broke down in shortly after he arrived in London in 1984. He had met his lover in the early 1970’s when the impact of the gay movement upon the consciousness of gay men was just gaining ground.
Couples though had come into their own. Gay self-help groups encouraged a change in sexual behaviour and a reduction in the number of partners. However, still without legal recognition, with the new emphasis on monogamy, with social attitudes reverting to hostility and given the invisibility of day-to-day life for gay men within relationships, being a partner in the 1980s proved to be as difficult as it had been decades ago.
Published by Stanley Barker, 2020
First published in 1986 and still just as powerful, Nan Goldin's The Ballad of Sexual Dependency is a must have for anyone's collection. A visual diary chronicling the struggles for intimacy and understanding among the friends and lovers whom Goldin describes as her tribe. These photographs described a lifestyle that was visceral, charged and seething with a raw appetite for living, and the book soon became the swan song for an era that reached its peak in the early 1980s. Twenty-six years later, Goldin’s lush color photography and candid style still demand that the viewer encounter their profound intensity head-on.
Published by Aperture
Another instant favourite from the last couple years, Molly Matalon's When A Man Loves A Woman. Drawing from the male-dominated history of “straight photography,” Molly Matalon’s images have a seductive clarity that evokes how our perceptions are sharpened in the excitement of an erotic encounter, and how those encounters are packaged and marketed back to us. But the intimacy being proffered by the subject or conjured by Matalon is rarely explicitly sexual, but rather quiet, vulnerable, tenderly perverse, akin to the tentative probing of someone seeking intimacy rather than a confident recounting of conquests by someone who has found it.
Published by Palm* Studios, 2020
C-Heads is a female-led digital and print magazine based in Vienna and Berlin. It offers a snapshot of youth culture through photography, fashion, music, travel, sex, art and culture.
Issue 37 is titled A Love Affair. This issue is dedicate to passion. The passion and love for what you do. The sort of passion that once it enters your life, you can‘t relinquish. It catches you, and like a wave, carries you up and down, impels you, and guides you to countless opportunities, endless like the vast ocean. Who knows where it carries you?
Frock Magazine issue 3 is a new adult queer mag, with a brilliantly refreshing and unapologetic take on sexuality and photography. Using the language of artist journals, homoerotic photography and independent zine culture, FROCK provides a platform for celebrating authentic queer joy.
An older publication we've been fortunate enough to stock recently- Jack Webb Suspects His Parents
In 1999 photographer Jack Webb began placing ads in British papers and magazines, seeking “genuine couples” to allow him to photograph them having sex. Of the many who replied, five couples were photographed, most inviting Jack into their homes and one to a local reservoir on a freezing November day. The results are non-idealized, both raw and astonishingly touching at the same time. “The paradox of these photographs,” as Anouchka Grose’s text observes, “is that they try to document something private, something that is not meant to be seen.” Nominated as the best photo book of the year by curator Charlotte Cotton for International Photobook Award 2012 at the International Photobook festival in Kassel, Germany
Published by Dashwood, 1999
Last but certainly not least, Hiroshi Shiohara’s second photobook “Just a Man in Love” portrays a couple having sex in a way not yet seen. Shiohara focuses exclusively on the facial expressions of the man as the couple goes from foreplay to climax (and eventually a walk in the grass, holding hands). The book offers no context and no details about the couple; yet the man’s face – earnest, natural, unpretending, glistening with sweat – tells a whole story. A brilliant, poetic book about passion and love.
Published by Libro Arte, 2019