The Identity Project Explores Labels That Define Gender and Sexuality
“I want to travel to five U.S. cities to photograph other queer communities. I’m committed to reflecting the beautiful diversity of our LGBTQ communities and I am actively seeking participants who are POC, trans*, bisexual, youth, elders, disabled, immigrant and otherwise identify as outside of the mainstream lesbian and gay culture,” Sarah Deragon stated.
Deragon decided to photograph the LGBTQ community in her area. Asking the subjects to pose, she also asked they submit their own identity. A photo from Deragon herself described her as “queer femme” and thus The Identity Project took root. The San Francisco-based photographer’s project soon gained recognition across the nation and worldwide. With the participants voicing their own identities instead of complying with labels, new terms were slowly being created with “transgenderqueer” and “inbetweener”.
In a statement to PolicyMic, Deragon expressed excitement at the personal identities instead of “just being shoved into little boxes and told to be one thing or another”. With Deragon’s inclusion of people of color, some of the subjects expressed that they do not always get to see someone like them on a regular basis and to be included in the project allows others to take notice.
“There is no right answer to the question of how people define themselves – and that’s an empowering concept,” Deragon said.
You can help fund Deragon’s The Identity Project until May 30th at indiegogo to help her journey across the country to capture the LGBTQ community.