Possibly the next gen Annie Leibovitz, lesbian photographer Tasya Van Ree is on our radar. And though her portraits are often of celebrities her style employs many fine art techniques, including splattered words across the page or eerie high contrast Cindy Sherman-like nuances. The Huffington Post likes to call her mix of fashion and fringe the love child of Ellen von Unwerth and Helmut Newton.
She often works with up-and-coming actress Amber Heard (Zombieland, Pineapple Express) whom she calls her "muse."
But a recent shoot brings this Hollywood lesbian art scene full circle as Van Ree focuses her camera upon the gangly form of The L Word’s Kate Moennig. It’s a piece she calls Time Never Stands Still but the black and white images of Moennig in historical referencing styles lends subtle irony to the title.
My personal favorite is the 1960s flower child headband in the bathtub. The messy hippie hair and snarky look has been repositioned as lesbian chic. This in combination with the slightly open mouth and bicep pressed to leg also portrays power and sex appeal.
But the image of the tough yet tender sailor and puppy paired with the languid pose of femininely draped fabric reminiscent of a Victorian brothel also sets off the pleasure centers of my queer brain. Van Ree is able to capture the sex appeal of Kate Moennig in both masculine and feminine forms.
Moennig is also able to be accepted as a sex symbol using both gendered and gender neutral signifiers, although this style is still considered edgy. And edgy works out just fine for a whole range of modern ladies. (You can view more of the artist’s photos online at TasyaVanRee.com.)
Is it workin’ for you?