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Paul Mpagi Sepuya

Page 1 | Biography


Jeffrey (detail) 2006
Jeffrey (detail) 2006
Jason, 2005
Jason, 2005
Woodrow, 2005 and Dean, 2006
Woodrow, 2005 and Dean, 2006
Leo, 2005 and Armando, 2005
Leo, 2005 and Armando, 2005
Eric, 2005
Eric, 2005
My portraits are the work generated as I explore the meaning of the desire and motivations that exist in the relationships between the young men who are my friends and at times, objects of affection, and myself, the artist. Some were strangers when we met and are now friends. All of them, whomever they are, have been invited into my home to sit for me. My portraits and projects are not documentaries, though they reflect a particular social group, because they are not so concerned with the truth but with memory and my own projection.

This is what photography has meant to me: it serves as an excuse, a tool for initiating, constructing, and investigating relationships- those that may or may not exist between my sitters and myself. The portraits are always made at the beginning of a new acquaintance or at a charged point in an existing one. My relationship to each subject is affected by the act of portrait-making. Photography is the drug that lowers my inhibition and permits me to investigate those networks of ambiguous relationships that grow out of platonic interest and sexual desire.
Photography is also a tool of pleasure, of indulgence, and of voyeurism. They are about potential, the erotic tension of the approach. This approach is just that and nothing more, a sexual act where both partners are engaged and distant. I photograph my sitters with as much nudity as they will allow me precisely because I am allowed this temporary indulgence, and because it asks both of us to acknowledge the oft-denied physical attraction within relationships.
Eric, 2005
Eric, 2005
Paul Mpagi Sepuya
144 Powers Street
Brooklyn
11211
New York, NY
NY
New York
North America

T: 1 917 304 4050
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w: http://www.modernpaul.com




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