Cruel to Be Kind
This project explores the way in which much of our sex, gender, sexuality and sexual pleasure is based in our emotional pleasure. Or displeasure, as the case may be. It has led me to discover how we use our bodies to process cruelty and pain, and how from that pain we can learn to push our limits into some kind of acceptance, or even transcendence.
These photos investigate the connection between pleasure and pain, and how kink can blur the line between where the body ends and the brain begins. It’s all in the moment between the smack, the punch, the pinprick and the slash, and the emotional release that comes when the pain is acknowledged.
We are inundated daily with images of horrific cruelty. And for some, these photos are tough to look at. They’re not erotic or salacious but they are meant to be beautiful. We see a moment of connection between people, someone with a far off look - where are they going in their mind. But more than that there is calm, peace, surrender, awareness, connection, anticipation and realization. There’s the desire to push our bodies and minds, to hold space, to heal and to connect.
In these images we find something rare and beautiful: the birth of pleasure, and healing, through pain.