Exploring the queer (sub)conscious.
Late-stage capitalism presents challenges to us all. Rising sea levels, inflation, war, and crisis after crisis has led human trauma response to become complex. The generation of TikTok, memes and other means of expressing deep sorrow, pain, and frustration through technological-infused humor often leads to a social paradox. Virtue signaling and toxic positivity combined with pinkwashing and the sudden capitalization of the so called queer aesthetic culminating in a party based Pride culture. They boil down queer identities to a tag line, a rainbow logo, or products fit for heteronormative and patriarchal consumption.
The exhibition ‘’Sensitive obscurities: exploring the queer (sub)conscious’’ comes from a deep desire to connect with the inner struggles, and then ultimately joys, of the queer body. By exploring the inner works of the experiences of five members of the large spectrum, that is the queer community in Rotterdam, the work connects with feelings of anger, loneliness, and abandonment. The reality of living within a queer body that is Othered, and often either put on a holy pedestal or seen as a devilish mistake. By not running away from the underlying abjection of these feelings, visual artist Rik Versteeg has embarked on a journey to create a storytelling exhibition, consensually exploring these very human journeys through a queer and post-feminist lens.
By applying values of radical intersectionality and with a strong focus on care, Licka Lolly, Roberto Angels, Lillith de Ville, Xiang Ye Yueng, and Fae, have been working directly with Rik to complete this visual journey, while also focusing on aftercare and support towards the participants, as vulnerability becomes an almost outspoken dance between the artist’s lens and the humans in front of it. By using a multidisciplinary approach that combines photography, fashion, film, and sound, we attempt a journey through honesty into the deep resonances of the vulnerable, by harnessing and reclaiming the forbidden.
From showcasing ardent desires to engaging within a realm of deep vulnerability, ‘’Sensitive obscurities: exploring the queer (sub)conscious’’ is a visual exploration dwelling within the eternal hope of the queer being and the unwavering desire to fully embrace and live autonomously our imperfect realities.
This exhibition is curated by Joana Cavaco, a multidisciplinary artist and community organizer based in Rotterdam.