Photo Exhibit Explores Taboos and Identities
June 12, 2018
By Mario A. Cortez
Images depicting Latinos in an everyday setting, without any shame or remorse, are currently being displayed in San Diego as part of an exhibit which looks to highlight cultural diversity in the community and personalities which are often hidden.
Comprised of 13 pictures, the exhibit “Taboos Reframed” by local photographer Ramon Sandoval looks to depict social and personal traits which may not be obvious on first impression.
This collection depicts latino individuals who are involved with the LGBT community and support sexual diversity, although they themselves may not identify as LGBT.
Each portrait acts as a study of each subject in which their attire, estimated age, time of day, and expected social roles all play a part.
“This is like telling a story,” said Sandoval. “We have among our models an 18 year old girl, a young zapatista man who is 29, a woman over 60, and another older woman.”
Sandoval said that the completing the project, from initial idea to final framing, took about three months.
During this time, the project saw a number of changes in direction and concept.
“The original idea was to show the body as is, because displaying the body is a taboo, so it was going to be all nudes; all photographs were going to show body parts and it turned out to be too graphic for this space,” Sandoval told La Prensa San Diego.
“So we took up the idea of exploring taboo in another way,” he continued.
Psychology and interpretation play a central role in this exhibit, as each still looks to bring out things which cannot be seen at plain sight.
Pointing to a pair of images of a older woman wearing indigenous Mexican garb, Sandoval explained that this person is a resident of Normal Heights who does not always dress in this way, but whose roots, strength as a person, and happiness can be displayed through the pictures.
Looking over the rest of the images in this exhibit, one can appreciate visuals which explore ideas such as loneliness in the face of empty space, youth imposed over maturity, self esteem and its conjugation with sexuality, among other concepts.
Sandoval received the invitation to exhibit his work at San Diego Pride’s offices after a number of exhibits in techniques such as collage, painting, mixed media, and his Dia de los Muertos altars which were set up in Old Town and North Park.
“Taboo Reframed” will be on exhibit at SD Pride offices, located on 3620 30th Street, through the end of June.