Saturday, March 14, 2009
Harvey Milk bought his 35mm Nikon rangefinder--a Nippon Kogaku--while serving in the Navy in the 1950's. Although Harvey made few images of his personal life early on, he began photographing more soon after his discharge.
For Harvey, the subject that continued for many years to have the greatest visual appeal was men--men from behind, men close-up, men sleeping, men cruising, men parading, men relaxing. Scott Smith, later Harvey's long-term lover and the executor of his estate, would become Harvey's favorite model, often posing for an entire roll of film in a single setting under his obsessive direction. The many images of Scott to be found in the archive exhibit a heartfelt intimacy, friendship, domesticity, and desire, revealing the photographer's true love for his subject. Although there are a number of sexually explicit photographs in the archive, I have decided not to include them in the exhibition in the belief that some images belong solely in the realm of privacy and legend.
more at http://www.queer-arts.org/archive/9906/milk/