Artist: Linda Bais
Male nude #2 (2016)
Linda Bais: According to the French philosopher Jean Baudrillard, photography does justice to a profound desire of the human being and that is the desire for an object: not what I miss, and even not what me misses, but to the him of her who does not miss me, to what can be done very well without me.
Reading this text, I found a concise summary of my own ambivalent attitude and use of the medium of photography. I recognize in my experience that a subject imposes itself on me and not the other way around. For me, the camera is ‘only’ the medium that I use to record phenomena. A phenomenon for me is what can lie behind the object and what gives me bits of secrets through my own photographs, in relation to my own life and the context of it.
The photos provide me and others with new puzzles. Photography is for me: the beauty of doubt. Except when she is ruthless as proof of the truth. I worked in the first years after my graduation at the Utrecht School of the Arts as a photographer-artist with mixed media. Photography was an interesting part and this resulted in photo collages, table-top stagings and photo montages with surreal fantasy and dream images. Furthermore, I wanted to investigate and question (deny) pure photography as a medium, and I immediately turned to visible reality with my camera. Since then, the constant in my work is how I want to be both recording and concealing simultaneously with the medium of photography.
The last five years I have been working on the male nude. On different models I project my thoughts and feelings: the man as an object. But it also does something with the (heterosexual) models: it gives them new experiences about themselves – for the camera – to be delivered to a female photographer and watched by other men. Next to that it is an exciting search; to images and meanings in which the male body can not be exposed in the every day manner (as we see in photographs and paintings from a male perspective).