Skin meets skin where limbs intertwine in these raw photographs by Wanda Martin, featuring closely nestled couples of widely varying genders and sexualities. Dubbed Lovers, the series captures moments of intimacy that transcend normative romantic dichotomies, with noses nuzzled into necks, eyes softly shut, and hair and arms askew as duos sprawl together in tender tangles atop wrinkled sheets.
Though the passion feels poignant in each tight frame, the shots are more emotional than they are erotic. They remind of the genuine magnetism that forges human bonds, regardless of heteronormative or LGBTQ+ identification?in fact, in many of the images, it’s difficult to tell where one person ends and the other begins.
The artist prompted a palpable authenticity in each composition by photographing true friends and loved ones “in their own rooms, in their private environment.” She explains, “My aim was to explore the nature of sexual fluidity and show the similarity between heterosexual and homosexual relationships.” She plans to expand the series to incorporate a wider range of races and ages as well, evidencing the inexhaustible variations in sexual expression.
Martin acknowledges that her work alone may not “change the world,” but it might inspire other artists to celebrate similarly inclusive themes. She says, “I honestly think that if more photographers and artists would focus on the subjects of contemporary LGBT culture and gender politics it would have a huge influence over the acceptance of these themes in society.”
All images via Wanda Martin.