Matthew Papa

Desire and the body are often subjects in my work because our ideas around them are rife with conflict. Working with friends, lovers, and strangers, I investigate relationships and open my subjectivity and theirs to new forms of engagement. Examining the power of images to construct knowledge, I bring to the fore that which is often glossed over or ignored. 

I’ve recently become interested in how language gives and denies access to the experience of embodiment. Making pictures can be a fundamentally physical yet silent act. Moving in tandem with my subject, I explore photography’s ability to ground experience.

The inherent fragility of the body recurs as a motif. Sexual longing radiates from the photographs but is often tinged by the anxiety of power, emasculation and death. Being human is fraught with risk and uncertainty, a bind my work embraces.