"TRENDING DEITIES" 

PHOTO SERIES

Social media users have created new ways to worship, celebrate, and empower queerness. 

The series explores the parallels between ritual and worship in both religion and social media and how they can be manipulated to greatest effect by those who best understand the platform and the inherent power that can be mined from it.

 

Western culture treats the male nude as homoerotic, regardless of context, and directly links it to queerness and homosexuality.

By proudly cultivating the nude male form on social media, the subjects have, in essence, transformed the platform into an altar - worshipping sex, beauty, and queerness.

 

This series explores social media models through the juxtaposition of ancient religious elements in order to depict the current ritualistic practices employed by the platform's users. Instead of spending time in houses of worship, we devote it to our devices.  We “pray” to these new “deities" with our likes and our comments and our shares. It is a ritual we partake in multiple times a day; for many of us, almost obsessively.

 

I used both modern and traditional references throughout this series to reflect its theme. The cinematic proportions of the images resemble smartphone screens and all the models are established social media users who celebrate the male form. I multiplied the characters and had them participate in ritualistic activities in order to physically depict the virtual cult-like following that is adherent on social media platforms. In some images, characters adorn themselves with rosary beads featuring social media trademarks. The scenes and their color palettes are inspired by Greco-Roman, Renaissance, and Medieval art. 

 

I created this series to explore the human condition and the connection between technology, sexuality, and idolatry.

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