Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Faces and Phases

Check out the amazing work of Zanele Muholi. Her photo series 'Faces and Phases' showcases the sexuality of Black women.

Faces and Phases is an ongoing series of black and white portraits that focuses on the commemoration and celebration of black lesbians' lives, and challenges the public's perceptions of female and male identity.

Muholi embarked on the project in 2007, taking portraits of women from the townships to offer positive imagery of black lesbians, who are often featured in the media as victims in the aftermath of episodes of violence. In 2008, after the xenophobic and homophobic attacks that led to the mass displacement of people in South Africa, she decided to gradually expand the series to include photographs of people from different countries.

Collectively, the portraits become an act of visual activism, the photographer's response to the violation, rape and murder of innocents because of their sexualities and ethnicities. Depicting women of various ages and backgrounds, this gallery of images offers a powerful statement about the similarities and diversity that exists within the human race.

In Muholi's words: "Featured in this series are beautiful, young and older human beings from various places: from Toronto to London, Johannesburg and Cape Town. One can't distinguish who is from where or how each person defines her/himself. People are people. Although we speak different languages and we go through many stages, we can find commonalities in the many identities which unfold in parallel in our existence."


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