A Spectra TDoV Exhibition in association with photographer Emil Lombardo.
Following the governments recommendation for Covid-19, the original exhibition was postponed in April.
Due to gradual easing of restrictions, and observing current socially distanced protocols, we are pleased to announce the relaunch of Political-Existences our Trans Day Of Visibility 2020 Exhibition, to be held at Newington Gallery. 155 Walworth Road, London, SE17 1RS, from September 4-6. Please book online in advance to help us manage the number of people in the gallery, limit queuing and reduce contact.
Political Existences is a series of portraits celebrating the diversity of the transgender community while questioning definitions of visibility and representation.
Born from a collaboration between LGBTQ+ charity Spectra and artist Emil Lombardo, this show is the culmination of a year of work photographing and interviewing transgender people from different backgrounds, ages, abilities and countries for the Trans Day of Visibility 2020. This international day, celebrated every 31st of March, is a reminder of the struggle that transgender people still face for acceptance and for their rights. Today, we want to celebrate this incredible courage in the face of adversity. Despite the medias heighten visibility for the transgender community, (with famous trans stars playing roles in major films and trans models walking the runaway of the Fashion Weeks, or award-winning TV-shows like Pose), transphobia still discriminates and kills our community on a daily basis.
Choosing the street as the primary setting for these portraits was not a coincidence. The question we ask today is: is the street a safe place for all of us?
The bodies of transgender people are political, our life is constantly judged, the most common experiences like using a public toilet or walking in the street are an everyday struggle. We do not experience the street with the same peace of mind a cisgender person does. When transgender people walk in the street, we are often looked at, called names and in sad cases, aggressed and killed.
By photographing the models in the middle of the road, Emil also questions the viewers’ relative privilege and position. The big-scale portraits look back at the viewer, exposing them and forcing the same vulnerability onto them. The goal of this exhibition is not to accuse, but to create a space where a visual dialogue between the viewer and the work can occur, a space for education and exchange, a space for the true celebration of diversity.
Emil Lombardo is an Argentinian London based photographer. He started photography while he was living in Paris in 2008. As a self-taught photographer, for more than eleven years, his primary focus was portraiture, landscape and architecture with a particular sensitivity for analogue photography and alternative processing techniques.
After moving to London, Emil’s practice evolved into an academic and political approach when he joined the Royal College of Art, where he is currently completing a two-year Photography MA.
Emil’s photography work focuses on identity politics and gender, and he is currently interested in the limitations of visibility and representation as well as the role of Art on subjects related to gender equality, intersectional feminism and questions of privilege and access.