4 July - 18 September 2011
10.00 AM - 07.30 PM
Christopher Clary is a multidisciplinary installation artist who uses appropriated and his own photography to confront issues of sexuality and masculinity. At the core of his practice is a collection of gay porn— magazines that document the bear, leather and trucker communities over a twenty year period, and a digital collection including 1,500 men downloaded from professional and amateur sex and social network websites. The collection becomes the starting point for the creation of works that consider his own sexual and social identity, and the production and consumption of images of male sexuality.Clary’s installation in Arles includes a presentation of his porn photo- graphs in a raw state; magazines on display and thumbnails printed on wallpaper. Within the space, images of Kevin from the collection are blown up on canvas and stacked in groups—JPG windows manifested as larger-than-life paintings. The installation also includes two series of photographs, involving Clary’s encounters with men from his collection in real life: invited to slowly undress over a period of two hours in front of a camera in his studio, Clary sets the camera to make photographs automatically every five seconds. As singular images, the results seem similar to the photographs in the collection, but the series as a whole reveals and explores a subtext to the ‘male nude’, with his encounters provoking and revealing expressions of vulnerability and pain as well as sexual self-confidence and desire.