If you haven’t considered human gender and sexuality on a philosophical level lately, take a second to let artist Del LaGrace Volcano navigate you through the complicated, impassioned geography using photography. Volcano’s portraits are not necessarily beautiful, but lead viewers to come to their own notion of beauty, race, culture, heart and necessity, and ultimately the weight of clarifications of gender, through incisive and thoughtful sentiments stated clearly, some with heartbreaking quip, bold but not unnerving. More appreciative and quizzically unintrusive, their simplicity allows their manifestos to feel like a given, at least momentarily. The sweeping sentiment is a spirituality one may prescribe to.
“Del LaGrace Volcano’s art consistently refuses “either/or” categories in favor of “both/and.” His/her art asks the kinds of questions that make their answers provisional and even irrelevant, because the truth is in the asking.”
“Consider intersex bodies. Consider my body. A body that has chosen to amplify rather than erase its inter-sex-i-ness. A body that is unwilling and unable to conform to claustrophobic cultural definitions of female OR male. A body that puts itself on the line to be judged by you.”
Each of the works and their intents can be viewed online here.
Del LaGrace Volcano: A Mid-Career Retrospective is on view at the Leslie-Lohman Museum until November 11, 2012.