I’ve always been an active and out spoken feminist
but somewhere last year I realized that my focus has always been a lot on what inequality is doing to women. Feminism, like mentioned before, for me means equality for both women AND men. I realized that focussing only on women wouldn’t help us to come closer together. In order for feminism to succeed, we need men. We need to understand their struggle and their stories. When I was paying closer attention to this topic I noticed that men in my surroundings were struggling a lot with expectations from society. It became clear to me that the past decades women have been able to move more and more into domains that were always considered male: we can become police officers, doctors, play football and practice boxing. The question is do we, within the culture that we have, give men the equal chances to let them into worlds that are considered more feminine like ballet or drama? Like there are 101 different types of women, I want people to see that there are also 101 different types of men. This is how my project ‘ADAM’ was born, to show this other side of the coin.
An important part of the project has been the nude aspect. Which made it harder at the beginning to find people who were willing to model for me. Now, a year later, I’ve built a portfolio and developed a clear style. It’s beautiful to see that now the roles are switching and people are actually approaching me to participate on the project. When talking about my work, the question why I decided to let the men model naked for me gets raised a lot. It’s an important and interesting question and had me thinking a lot. The reason why it adds another layer to the project for me is because I see nude photography also still mainly as a female domain. Meaning that it’s mostly nude women that we’re used to see. With my work I would like to change this perspective and play with these roles that we seem so used to. ‘ADAM’ has become an ongoing project and it has been very helpful working on it alongside this thesis. It gave me the opportunity to do actual field research and have in depth talks and discussions with my models on the subject. When I started to show the project online, I also noticed that it moved people in all ways possible. People would come up to me and tell me how they were struggling themselves with their identity or men, (from who I never thought they would feel a connection with this subject) suddenly wanted to participate in the project. To put ‘ADAM’ out there and take in the responses and feedback from everyone has helped me to believe, continue and grow incredible much.