As most of you know, I created a body of work where I invited people into my bed to photograph them nude, which I titled “The Bed Series”. I shot both men and women, or both existing in the space as one. Throughout the life of the series, it existed as many things; constantly changing and reworking itself like a stubborn adolescent. I had to concentrate on the constant: the fleeting visitors, and the bed itself. This corpus was by inception sexual due to the obvious nude, but brought back to something much more delicate, something much more sensual.
I would like to discuss Nan Goldin, for the purpose of the fleeting moments within the photograph. In The Ballad of Sexual Dependency, Goldin documented the people she was surrounded by and the on goings in her life, which included drug use, violence, aggressive couples, and the gay/transgender community. Beyond the shocking in these photographs, they were a collection of fleeting moments, of people she had collected, gathered, and grouped into one solid compilation. Less brash then Goldin’s photos, I took a more delicate approach with my bed. I collected these people, these fleeting moments, configuring the pieces to make them fit. My sexual dependency became my pushing desire of why they are here in the first place. One conclusion that I came to was that I was sorting out my own sexuality with these figures, but I wasn’t searching for a partner in them.
It was bittersweet when I had to pack my bed sheets up and make my move down to Oakland. This bed had become everything. My first body of work as an artist, my launching pad for thought and creativity. I had it set in my head that I would start something similar once I was set up in Oakland. But would I use the same sheets? How could I? They represented such a pivotal moment in my life; it seemed dirty for me to use them again. It seemed wrong for me to even use the same concept. Alas, the artist dilemma.
When I moved down here, I became taken with someone. A man. A very bright, handsome, understanding man. At first, I wrote and thought about it with pure, irrational, raw emotion. The weight of it crushed my body and I had no idea what I was dealing with. I was just smitten (still am, naturally). We started dating, and as our relationship progressed, my desire to bring others into my bed diminished. How could I? I had only known him in this bed; it just couldn’t be any other way. This bed IS him. It shares his essence, smells of him, even holds him in photographs. No one else is allowed to share those things except for this bed, these photographs, and myself. After we ended things, I found myself sleeping on the couch or floor; some nights I still do. The bed holds too much significance.
This recent discovery has made me wonder if I had started the bed series because I was looking for someone. It made me wonder this, because my previous bed held so many visitors (through photographs) while this bed has only held one.