matt lambert explores queer safe spaces for grindr's first photo book
The Berlin-based photographer traveled through gay communities all over the world in the wake of the Orlando shooting (and prior to the U.S. Presidential Election).
Everyone who voted to keep a demagogue out of the White House is currently questioning their place in America, but the LGBTQ community has been dealt a particularly heavy blow. The Presidential Election came only seven months after the homophobic massacre at Pulse nightclub in Orlando that claimed 49 lives and left millions more fearful of what lies ahead in their own. Grindr is exploring the precarious yet increasingly important future of these "safe spaces" through a new photo project called Home. Shot by LA-born, Berlin-based photographer Matt Lambert, the project is an attempt on behalf of his community to answer the difficult question: "Where do we go from here?"
The six-month casting process took Lambert all over the world to meet locals and small town drifters in Toronto, Paris, London, Prague, New York, Los Angeles, and his own adopted city of Berlin. He used both physical and digital platforms to navigate the often-hidden queer communities in these disparate locales, and the series is a testament to the importance of each as a means of forges intimate connections with likeminded people. Sometimes the subjects stand alone except for their iPhones, eyes gazing at the camera, while other photos depict couples totally lost in the moment. The book also features a foreword by Bruce LaBruce that reflects on "how it used to be" — leaving Lambert to illustrate both the uncertain present and the endless possibilities.
Text Hannah Ongley
Photography Matt Lambert