Tommy Kha is originally from Memphis, Tennessee and is now based in New York City. He is a recent graduate of the Yale Photography MFA program. Tommy’s work explores the traditions of the self-portrait, applying and re-positioning his self as a way to subvert the “artist as protagonist” inherent in the self-portraiture. His work has appeared in publications such as Slate, the Huffington Post, BUTT Magazine, Le Roy (DDMMYY), La Repubblica, Wu Magazine, Miranda July’s “We Think Alone,” and Wallpaper*. Tommy is also a recipient of the Jessie and Dolph Smith Emeritus Award and formerly an artist-in-residence at the Center for Photography at Woodstock. Today we take a look at his series titled This Graceland.
Relying on the language of self-portraiture, this anthology revolves around my relationship with masculinity and the South, revealing the underlines of alternative histories and heritage.
My photography explores the traditions of the self-portrait operating in the terrains of the anthology film, performance, and staged photography. I reposition myself within and outside the boundaries of my picture making as a way to navigate through my own otherness as an Asian, gay Southerner. In using different subject matters, a discontinuity emerges, often to subvert the “artist as protagonist” inherent in self-portraiture while questioning my representation that is almost absent within the media. Thus, there is an implication that the self remains unfixed and the inability to locate myself that exists in my work.
To view more of Tommy’s works please visit his website.