Argos may well sing "Putting out fire, with gasoline", he shares the tastes, values ​​and ideas of the performer who supports him. I am: atheist, social democrat, anti-conformist, bookworm, lover of arts & letters and, nothing can be perfect, practitioner (but not fanatic) of BDSM.
Reading the Masters & Johnson report and discovering the work of Robert Mapplethorpe are the premises for my practice. The reasons why I ended up one evening by saying “why not” to a Sir. Curiosity and a taste for play motivated me to overcome my prejudices and apprehensions, the desire for the forbidden did the rest and until now, it remains the basis of my practice: curiosity, play, overcoming, forbidden. A more embodied way of reading about the counterculture, more instinctive and more physical. Argos is the character, the key, to making certain works accessible to me.

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Out of the shadows

Chris Lau | Quebec, Canada

‘Out of the Shadows’ sheds light on people living on the margins of society. Paying homage to Diane Arbus who saw those that would otherwise go ignored, this social documentary portrait series captures people in all their authenticity: their defiance, vulnerability, awkwardness and sensuality. Through my social worker lens and my critical aperture, each person is acknowledged, no longer hidden behind the labels and stereotypes imposed on them…imposed on US, as I include myself among them.

Focused lighting creatively and symbolically casts shadows onto their richly-textured realities. Both black-and-white and colour images are used to convey the timelessness of the subjects (we have always existed and will continue to exist forever) as well as their very present existence.

Living in the shadows doesn’t imply living on the periphery of society, nor does it mean we are the minority. We are many who share a common, yet distinct, experience of “othering”. Once we realize our commonality, we are, in fact, the majority and at the very center of society.

Life often leads you down unexpected roads. From being an architectural technician to a social worker and, now, a photographer and visual artist. Perhaps we’re meant to constantly evolve as human beings.

Each of my professional careers inform the others, giving me a unique perspective on life and about people. My attention to detail and sense of perfection, my humanism and compassion, my ethical values, as well as my desire to deliberately not fit into social norms or visual standards define who I am.

Although I strive not to mimic any famous photographers, I am hugely inspired by the vision of Diane Arbus, an American photographer whosaw those that would otherwise go ignored. I believe photography has the power to change people’s attitudes and people’s lives. I don’t aim to solely create beautiful images; I aim more so to create impactful ones. I aim to bring out people’s authenticity. I aim to document the world as it truly is, through my anti-oppressive lens.

Instagram: @jcl_in_mtl

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