Whether you’re little spoon or big spoon, enveloped in a duvet or clothed only by each other’s limbs, London College of Fashion graduate Wanda Martin is photographing couples of all genders and sexualities in their closest and most intimate quarters: bed.
“My aim was to explore the nature of sexual fluidity and show the similarity between heterosexual and homosexual relationships,” says Martin. “I try to celebrate love par excellence and show that love and sexuality don’t depend on sex or gender, only on the person. I’m shooting couples in their own rooms, in their private environment.”
In an ongoing two-year project, Martin draws from the works of Nan Goldin, Corinne Day, Mark Morrisroe and Larry Clark, who themselves documented their surrounding subcultures, friends and lovers in personal spaces. “I try to investigate ‘identity as a construction’ in our postmodern age – both sexual and subcultural identity,” explains Martin.
The Lovers project captures couples in muted light, entangled in one another in natural, intimate poses. The couples are friends or peers of Martin, as it made sense to her when photographing such raw and real moments. “It means I can show one side of our contemporary youth culture in a more honest way,” she says.
Martin observes overarching themes of acceptance, sexuality and identity in her work. She explains: “Obviously I don’t think my project in itself can change the world, but I honestly think that if more photographers and artists would focus on the subjects of contemporary LGBT culture and gender it would have a huge influence over the acceptance of these themes in society.”