Photo Project : Social Distancing by Damien Frost
Damien Frost photographs a global community of drag queens, artists, performers, and designers living in isolation. 22May 2020. Text Gilda Bruno. Damien Frost's Social Distancing, Portraits40. Damien Frost is an Australian British photographer known for his incredible photography series Night Flowers.
“ I had no idea when I started these remote portraits at the end of March - just as we were all going into quarantine that it would become such an all consuming project but it’s allowed me to find a focus and provide an outlet for my energies during this strangest of periods. Meeting amazing people, making new friends and catching up with old friends all over the world via video chat has been an unexpected joy and helped distract me from the uncertainty and anxiety lurking in the background. Strangely, this quarantine has been one of the most relaxing periods of my life where I’ve been able to get enough sleep, go for long bike-rides and eat wonderful meals. Despite this there’s been a shadow on the wall - a Damocles sword of redundancy looming over the proceedings entire time and that uncertainty gets drawn more real as the days and weeks go by and like others that work in theatre and live entertainment there feels like a blurred veil of mist hanging obscuring what the future holds. I am so incredibly grateful for all the people took part in this project, despite often being in the midst of difficult circumstances and for everyone else who came along for the ride and leant their support - thank you.
” - Damien Frost
“I am an extreme extrovert, optimistic, people-person and for me a regular day wouldn’t end without meeting with at least 50 people. It was around 5 years before the time I was in an isolation that I had the thought to present my art. But I couldn’t withstand staying without it. And the next time I came, I came as a shooting star who never wants to leave the stage. For a long time, I always ensured to not stay at home even on weekends - I ensured to rush, run and engage myself with lots and lots of people around the city. I never want a day to be spent without art. Somedays it was dance or drag or performance art. My body became accompanied with a constant adrenaline rush to create, create and create art. Soon the news of corona virus creeped into my devices, I tried to convince myself it won’t come to my country, or my city and as it developed, I ensure, I can still get a place. I can still get people and I still share my art with people around
I believe art has to transcend people physically and emotionally and kept looking for days to turn where i could go to perform my inner persona S.A.S (Suffocated Art Specimen). It was indeed taking over me. However, as the time passed, the boundaries around me sucked in and became tight. Post the lock down announcement in my country, I got confined to be inside four walls. The first week was spent retrospecting and telling myself, I cannot stop. Thankfully I discovered new ways to use technology which bridged the gap, helping the inner persona to stage itself and sustain. That was when I decided I would create art constantly. By being a part of music videos to shortfilms, online drag shows to drag looks shoots, i started working on everything gradually and somehow made 'It' spread across the world” S.A.S.