3RD PLACE - PHOTO, Nude, 2021
Photo © Thanh Vuong
A river that flowed from Eden
This image celebrates the male form and shows my desires and appreciation of it as a queer artist. It is also about freedom of sexual expression and sexual identity, especially for queer Asian men, many of whom are still oppressed. Here, I created a Utopia drawn from personal fantasies of a lush garden, watered by one of the four rivers that flowed from the garden of Eden, where men can love other men, free from social injustice, prejudice, judgement, unafraid to be seen or heard. I want to say that homosexuality, or sexual identity in whichever form it may take, is a part of nature and goes back to the roots of humanity itself, in the dawn of creation.
Thanh Vuong AUSTRALIA
Thanh Vuong is a Melbourne-based photographer. He is a graduate of the Photography Studies College in Melbourne with a Bachelor of Photography, majoring in Art, in 2017. He specializes in photographing the male body in natural landscapes using natural light. In his projects, Vuong explore themes of gender politics and the representation of queer identity, masculinity and the male form. His works draw inspirations from the rich tapestry of homoerotic art and pay tribute to pioneering queer artists who wove the first threads of resistance against censorship, suppression and fought for the freedom of personal expression and queer identity worldwide.
His work in the series In my garden the trees are changing (2017) was recognized and awarded first prize, the Leica and Ilford Excellence in Photomedia Award, at the Centre for Contemporary Photography (Melbourne) Summer Salon 2017. He also received multiple awards for images from the same series at the Australian Professional Photography Awards at States (Victoria) and National levels in the same year. His series (Not) Blue was shortlisted for Australian Photographer of the Year by Capture Magazine in 2017. He was also a finalist in the British Journal of Photography’s first OpenWalls competition, held in Arles, 2019.
Vuong is currently represented by Boys!Boys!Boys, an initiative of the Little Black Gallery in London.
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