“'Experimental Relationship' flips the image of masculine power on its head, turning the woman into the purveyor of control through poses, gestures and interactions between two parts of a couple, all caught on film. In the photos, Moro (Liao’s boyfriend) can be seen as the submissive party — directed, managed and laid bare (quite literally) by Liao.
With captions like “You don’t have to be a boy to be my boyfriend” and the seemingly facetious “Relationships work best when each partner knows their proper place,” Liao disrupts our gendered expectations and creates a beautiful examination of passion and sexual connection along the way.”
This is an illustration I did for my friend, Dai’s, PhD thesis. A part of his thesis involved a study around how some gay men (particularly those of a minority status) negotiate being gay outside of mainstream gay culture. One story that really stood out to me as being quite unique and touching involved a middle-aged fellow who has never been intimate with another man, doesn’t necessarily identify as being gay, but spends his days knitting baby socks on park benches and on the train as a way to perform his ‘gayness’. As he still lives at home with an extremely conservative family this is essentially the only way he knows to express his sexuality.