Alan Goldsmith Lens Culture Portrait Awards Submission
Project info

Photographs #1-3, “Adam,” “Camouflage,” and “Manhattan Teen,” each combine my portrait of a young African-American male with images from other shoots I've done. The goal is to create a layered, richly textured composition that adds new context, meaning, and complexity to the original subject.

Photographs #4 and #6, “Man in the Mirror” and “Disapproval,” are selfies taken in the mirror as I made exaggerated faces to accentuate the lines and folds in my aging mug. Seen in close-up, individual identity becomes secondary to physiognomy. The images can also be viewed as those of a dispassionate researcher documenting in detail the physical characteristics of another species.

Photo #5, “Me Two,” is of me kissing my reflection in the mirror, and was originally intended as a parody of the selfie infatuation with oneself. Much to my surprise it turned into something else entirely: a disturbing image in which any humor and self-celebration have been replaced by hints of subjugation and sexual violence.