Mickey Aloisio: Gay Wildlife


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Mickey Aloisio may have the best tactic to banish the dilemma of how to make a nude subject instantly comfortable for the camera. "I'll get naked too, that's fine." He tells me it happens just like that. Everything's ok if you're naked together. Aloisio's body of work Gay Wildlife makes you comfortable. His passion for his community and his peers is instantly read in the photographs. There's something individual and unique about each subjects gaze into the camera. Aloisio and his subjects talk the entire time they're shooting; they share roles of dominance and submissiveness. That performance isn't one that happens in the photos, but there is something matter of fact and bare that results in the images from those interactions.

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© Mickey Aloisio

"I love photographing the bear community because bears have this confidence about them. Maybe it's taken them a long time to achieve, but they understand the beauty of their bodies." The men in Aloisio's images give him something, but they are also able to take something from him. So do we as viewers. These photographs establish a connection and allow for the ability to be a part of a very significant and established history of camaraderie among certain types of men. The photos aren't just of naked men; they're about people. The men in Aloisio's images are more bare than naked, they tell us something about themselves. The playfulness of his imagery and the subject overcomes a very human feeling - nervousness.

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© Mickey Aloisio

Sometimes it's incredibly difficult to be comfortable in your own skin and know who you are. Gay Wildlife is Aloisio's way of talking to these men who captivate him and finding out who they are, who he is, and what his community of peers is all about. These men come from all walks of life, and by photographing them in their private spaces their personalities shine through. The work is a collaboration. It'd be too easy to say these images are pornographic, position and environments are sexual, our bodies are simply the form of who we are. Just because we don't know these men doesn't make these photos voyeuristic. A huge part of any great portrait is not knowing who's in the picture. Aloisio just wants to allow these men a platform and voice to be heard, they are beautiful.

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© Mickey Aloisio

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© Mickey Aloisio

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© Mickey Aloisio

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© Mickey Aloisio

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© Mickey Aloisio

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© Mickey Aloisio

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