With photography it sometimes happens that you don’t know if you have to pay attention to what is photographed or to the photograph itself. Well, in the case of Beccy Strong’s photographs for this “Self Made” exhibition, you have to look at everything. The name “Self Made” is not accidental, and refers to the protagonist of the photographs: Kay J. Browning. He is a self made man. A true force of nature. His physical appearance indicated that he might be of one gender, but his inner nature told him that he was of another. In the end, the idea about nature -which we already know is a theoretical construction- has ended up winning. The result is a work of art. That’s why the confusion when looking at the photographs, that we don’t know if we have to pay attention to the photographed Kay or to the photographs themselves, the work of Beccy.
Beccy Strong’s photographs with Kay J. Browning have opened up a new field for trans photography. Until now we have seen a lot of trans porn online, but now what we see is an honest attempt to find a sexy image. Someone will think that it is not easy. But you are wrong. To find it, a straight look was necessary.
Along with the exhibition, a meeting between Kay and the trans ftm collective has been proposed. Specifically with “FtM Valencia”. With this, it is about an exchange of experiences, to rearm in the defense of human rights. In fact, the exhibition was born from the fact that Kay was on tour around the continent before the summer, giving some conferences, meetings, enriching her experience with a view to a future that he imagines writing, when La Posta Foundation got in touch with him for inclusion in the program of activities parallel to the exhibition “Museari Queer Art”. In the end it could not be due to a scheduling problem, and he was postponed to this start of the season. Now his participation occurs within the framework of the exhibition of photographs that Beccy Strong has made of him. He couldn’t have turned out better.
Beccy Strong is an old acquaintance of La Posta Foundation. She exhibited her work last year as part of the collective exhibition “neXos. New views in European documentary photography”, a project of ENMap (European Network of Master Studies in Photography), an exhibition that was organized by students of the Master in Photography, Art and Technique of the UPV, within the framework of PhotOn International Festival of Photography. When Kay told us that Beccy had taken some photos of him, after seeing them, we did not doubt that they were perfect for the occasion.
Beccy Strong commented in a post this summer about her photography project with Kay: “I’m working on a long-term project with Kay Jane Browning @instakingkoala and in the process of working together we’re getting to know each other. Every time we meet we talk more and the process opens. Kay is a transgender man. He is also an infinite range of other things that can be named, a son, a brother, a friend, a dancer, a writer and a human rights activist. We recently got together and talked about these labels that our psyches cling to for security reasons. Society also likes to have a name or label to classify and place one.”
It is a very happy moment for the La Posta Foundation to be able to show Beccy’s work and offer Kay the opportunity to develop an action in favor of human rights for everyone, beyond labels.
BECCY STRONG came to photography after an international career in film and documentary. He now works with photography, film and sound.
Having recently completed a Masters in Photography at Plymouth University, her work broadly explores questions about our changing relationship with nature and the impact it is having, both internally and externally, on the landscape and world around us.
Beccy works in research leading self-initiated projects, and she also collaborates with other artists as a filmmaker, as well as doing commercial work in photography and film. She currently teaches film classes at Plymouth College of Art.