2015 - 

Attached Detached is a photographic and narrative series that profiles LGBTQIA+ couples and single individuals from around the globe (America, Chile, China, France, Russia, Japan, New Zealand, Serbia, Singapore, UK, Venezuela, etc.) The work revolves around relationships (past or present) and includes the successes and/or challenges they faced throughout their lives.

 

Aesthetically, Attached Detached explores abstract, figurative and partial portraiture. Those who were anonymous were identified with a color they determined by contributing a set of RGB numbers.

 

This work began when I was based in Asia to help give voice and presence to the LGBTQIA+ community there after meeting a local community leader who expressed a great need to recognize their presence from the context of Asia. It continued after I moved to Miami in 2016 with the shifting, social landscape and in the aftermath of the 2016 shootings at Pulse in Orlando. Forty-five portraits have been created to date.

 

“My parents took me to conversion therapy where a gay man talked about how he was no longer gay and how he was very happy with his wife and kids living as a straight man. He said that if you read the scriptures and believed being gay was wrong, you could change…gay people in my hometown (Mississippi) couldn’t be themselves. Their society did not allow it…But Sean (my partner) reminds me that it’s ok to be you, and he lives this “ok” everyday of his life…Sean has made me feel more adult, confident and passionate about life.” - Hunter, USA

 

“When I was at my University library, I found a book, Queer Theories, written by Li Yinhe who was famous for her sexual agenda studies. After reading the book, I finally found the world I lived in because it introduced me to gender equality and diversity issues.  

 

My interest in this topic translates into what I do today as Director of the Beijing LGBT Community Center. The center’s vision is that all citizens regardless of gender identity, expression and sexual orientation can experience equality…we’re working with the media to make sure that people know about the diversity within the community and not just group people together. For example, Jing Xin, a famous Chinese modern dancer is also a trans woman who had corrective surgery. And some people think all transgender women are like her. But many transgender people face tough lives and are ostracized from society…we need to continue to support them…If you are living in a closed society where a large rock blocks you from experiencing the rest of the world, I challenge you to climb over it so you can see a more beautiful, brighter and diverse world.” Iron, China

 

“Our wedding which was held in the UK was a big affair…It was beautiful. At no time did Eddy’s parents (who didn’t speak English) feel left out because many of our non-Chinese friends spoke fluent Mandarin…Every time my mother-in-law took a seat to take a break, another handsome blonde man wearing a kilt (Scotland is my heritage, and we held a ceilidh) engaged her in Chinese and brought her back onto the dance floor. That was the first time she danced in public. And the marriage helped to reinforce our union, especially to Eddy’s parents. We both plan to expand our family with children later on.” Jack, England

Iron + Anonymous #12, 2016 © CYJO
Marlon_A copy.jpg
Anonymous #4 + Marlon, 2015 © CYJO
ELI copy.jpg
Eli  2017  © CYJO
 Hubert 2015 © CYJO
LG  + Anonymous #5, 2015 © CYJO
Anonymous #8,  2015 © CYJO
Ravi + Claudiu 2015 © CYJO
Sharon + Theresa 2018 © CYJO