hideo shiraki quintet + 3 koto girls – sakura, sakura

Hideo Shiraki (drums), Terumasa Hino (trumpet), Takeru Muraoka (tenor sax, flute), Yuzuru Sera (piano), Hachiro Kurita (bass), Keiko Nosaka (koto), Kinuko Shurane (koto) and Sachiko Miyamoto (bass koto).

“Sakura” means cherry blossom – this flight of fancy is based on a traditional Japanese tune.

Recorded in Berlin on November 1, 1965 by Willi Fruth and Guenther Topel. Saba SB15064.

#beyondbinaries: queer and the reconstruction of identity – a photographic exhibition by germaine de larch


“There are more things […] in heaven and earth, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” – Shakespeare, Hamlet

These images are an artistic exploration and performance of being and experience beyond binaries. My vision for this project stems from the need to document the queer, carnivalesque space I have excavated for myself that exists beyond the constructs of reality, identity and gender as binaries, dualities and stereotypes. ‘#beyondbinaries: queer and the reconstruction of identity’ is an exploration, through self-portraits and portraits, of the contradictions, multiplicities and fluidity inherent in queer lived experience.

My work is, first and foremost, a vehicle through which I perform the continuing creative reconstruction of my self. It is a way for me to document who I am, who I am becoming, and provides me with a stage upon which to explore my self and my performance of continuously and unendingly recreating and reconstructing my fluid identity and gender identity. It is a stage from which I can share that de- and reconstruction with my audience.

My portraits tell the stories of those who use a similar stage to renegotiate and reconstruct their own identity. My images are a conscious choice to tell my own story and collaboratively tell the stories of my community, my city. My work is thus a collaboration with people and places on a journey of who they are, who are interested in playing with their identities, who want to explore the creative possibilities outside of the binaries, dualities and stereotypes constructed for us.

liberals at dusk (2005)

(Posted this first on Papanihil, a now-defunct blog I used to contribute to – on 29 June 2005)

Kimberley Hotel Reception, 24 August 2013. Photo: Rosemary Lombard

Kimberley Hotel Reception, 24 August 2013.
Photo: Rosemary Lombard (with a Kakberry)

“Oh C’MONNN!” The driver in front of me hesitates as the light turns orange. Rearing to a halt, I yank up the handbrake and a woman’s waddling over, a wad of Big Issues clamped under one armpit, a limp bundle slipping sleeping from its swaddling under the other. My window’s half-open.

In one deft movement she hikes up low-slung child with elbow, thrusts out magazine with hand. I shake my head, smiling blankly; she jerks hers toward the May issue lying on my back seat, barely visible in the failing light.

“Hey M’am, that one’s too much old now!”

“Sorry, at the moment I really don’t have any money, Sisi – see, I’m working as a volunteer. I’m not being paid this month.” It’s so bloody cold with the window down.

“Ohh, okay,” she shrugs, arching an eyebrow (what incredible co-ords), “I understand… You working for free.” Her words puff out, grey and laconic, a dragon’s exhausted fumes. She smiles. “Hawu. But you too stupid.”

I grin back, stupidly. “You’re right, hey.” The light’s about to change. “Okay, byebye now. Next month, I hope…”

She steps back, the car bucking forward as I take my sheepish foot off the clutch just a little too quickly. At least I had a valid excuse.