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In your face & in my heart

Updated: Jul 13, 2021



This is what came when I randomly started to play with a stop motion app on my phone. I like it.



Upon dissecting why I do gravitate towards some certain aesthetics, I'd say there is in it - in my fasciation towards sensuality and human bodies - that Cong Anh said once when he looked at my photos on Flickr: "You take photos as if propelled by the knowledge that the things you are photographing of are going to be gone, to disappear."


It is, yes, in the youthful form of the woman's body here that I adore. But not in its sexual power. The reason is that it REPRESENTS, is a relic of a time in a human life. A glorious time, blossoming, colorful time.


At the old artist's house, when my eyes fell upon the artist's hands as he opened his decades-long catalogue of artworks, similar swelling emotions suddenly burst inside the container of me. The man was ancient. I don't remember how old he is. But he went to the Indochina College of Fine Arts, which was founded in 1925 and closed in 1945. So he must be well over 80. Time has rendered his skin translucent. Under the thin layer of the skin, the blue veins run like roots of an ancient tree through the pink, spotted area of the underlying flesh.


I was near tears. I wanted to cry. I was in awe. It was beautiful. It was life.


So in questioning and at times risking myself to publish imageries of nude bodies, I try to figure what it is to me. It is dangerously intimate. I always recoil from the thought that the imageries will draw attention to me. Not me. I don't want attention. I do love attention. I don't want to look like I want attention. That's how my childhood fucked me up.


I take photos of my skin, my bones, my flesh, my curves, my fat. I look at them as if I look at me. Sometimes I judge them. Sometimes I think they don't live up to my worth. Sometimes, at tenderer hours - which happen more regularly now with age, I want to caress them, and thank them for their work, and their company throughout the years.


Yesterday, M and I walked to the shop. The streets were deserted. There was a sense of apocalypse in the air. When I picked up my heels just higher to get over a broken tile on the pavement at the corner of Xuan Thuy, a thought formed. "I've rehearsed my deaths often enough. It's probably helped me deal with this better than some others."

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