Originating from Los Angeles, Brooklyn based photographer Shaun Lucas captures the banalities and taboos in American Culture. His uncanny portraiture pays tribute to his former pageant Mother, who encouraged his need for “artistic” expression. Due to his appetite for vanity and leisure, he explores the various quintessential social groups embodied in America. He documents suburban lifestyle that portrays many facets of life, ranging from the intimacy of interpersonal relationships to the deeply rooted subcultures. Attracted to society’s construction of land, Lucas exposes the deception in subdivisions and human-made environments. While exploring different social groups, he captures American ideologies such as gun culture, motifs, politics, and consumerism. Interested in how people adapt and mirror their environment, he creates a new perspective on mundane subjectivity. His vivid sunny California palette reflects his satirical personality. When not shooting with his medium format camera, Shaun prefers to travel and lounge out in the sun.
Steven Harwick is an artist living in Brooklyn, NY. His work is primarily done through photography; however, he also works in video, installation, and collage. The main focus of his practice is his self-published zine, Bound Leather, which was started as a means of exploring and documenting the contemporary leather and BDSM communities through a photographic lens, leaning on cultural history and traditional fetish imagery while simultaneously subverting those standards by showcasing an array of people more inherently inclusive than the long-established canon. Even work falling outside of this project still aims to highlight identity, subversions, and perversions.
“MASK” a new creative collaboration between Shaun Lucas and Steven Harwick.
“MASK” aims to create an environment where body modification in the pursuit of perceived masculinity runs rampant between two lovers. The pursuit reaches an absurd crescendo ultimately ending with the two being physically fused. This series reflects on the grotesque masculine “ideals” pervasive in gay culture and the absurd lengths taken to mask internalized misogyny. These behaviors perpetuate generations of toxic learned behavior. In this body of work, Lucas and Harwick exemplify and fetishize tropes of gay culture through a seamless mix of two aesthetics. “MASK” invites the viewer to reflect on society’s constant need for unrealistic appearance standards.
To view more of Shaun Lucas and Steve Harwick’s work please visit their website.