'Alive' is about always being able to find your true self through accessing your dreams & passions - whether it's finding your self in a dysphoric political landscape or an unhappy job, your essential self is always just beneath the surface, waiting to empower you no matter how unhappy or hopeless you may feel.'
If you've been following my posts about Brett Gleason's Manifest, you know the album and it's songs have been building to a crescendo. Alive, Brett's new single, is certainly the climax to some of the beautifully dark emotions and themes Brett explored and exposed in some of the other albums other tracks. When I last featured Manifest, the skin was raw, with one of my favorite tracks from the album, Expiration Date which explores isolation and loss. With Alive, the skin is wet, washed and fresh with hope that light, and love are not only possible, but also near.
With the current political climate, I know a lot of us are hoping for an awakening, something I couldn't help but think of while I listened to Alive's . The lyrics, 'The Dream is Alive, It had been turned upon it’s head, condemned, assaulted, declared dead: But now we rise!' are powerful words that sum not only what is happening, but also hopefully, where we're headed.
I also couldn't think of better images to sum up this 'rise' than Brett's shoot with New York photographer Ron Amato. I previously featured Ron's work back in 2013 (Into The Woods) and have been really enjoying some of the current theme's he has been exploring including The Box, as well as Ron's uniquely artistic response to #45.
There seems to different theories about contamination. Most of us were raised learning that to 'contaminate' something meant it was now damaged, polluted and not as pure. How many times in science class were we given examples of how certain compounds, when added to others, dilute, erode, and weaken their potency.
As most of us get older however, we see the power of positive contaminates. Without introducing new elements to our our lives, our bodies, our spirit, we would stagnate and live a mundane and tedious existence. Mixing new ingredients with old might be scary for some, but it can create energy and excitement and powerful changes not possible without the formation of new formula. Ultimately contamination is just change, and everything that's great, especially in the arts, is the result of creative contamination.
So why I am focusing on contamination? Because when reading about London actor, dancer and model Anybodyshoes I was fascinated to find out one of his goals is experimentation and contamination, especially within his passion and work in theatre and the arts. It is often said there are not really any new ideas or stories to write, film or perform, they've all be told, most of them by Shakespeare. What can be fresh and exciting however, is finding new ways to tell the old stories, new ways to perform a classic show and new ways to energize an art form.
I can feel this energy in Anybodyshoes work with Male Beauty by bengie. FH readers know how much I love bengie's work. I love how bengie so organically captures the male form in casual and classic physique poses, and the locations and themes bengie uses within his work. While I was enjoying bengie's shots, I was think of a post I did a couple of years ago featuring models that bengie had show in front of his patio's french doors. (La Porte-Fenêtre) I love this series from bengie, but noticed how his shots of Anybodyshoes had the added energy of movement.
Although the doors of course were fixed in place, Anybodyshoes was not content to remain still while posing in front of them. Like his name, he was not content to walk in the shoes of those who posed before him, instead the dancer came out creating unique and sexy poses to contrast the squares of the windowed door behind him.
In most of bengie's images, Anybodyshoes appears either in movement, or still, for just a split second, between shifting his body to create his pose. Bengie really liked the new elements this shoot brought as well, and how easy Anybodyshoes was to work with. Begie also loved how his dance background helped create such beautiful poses. So far they have shot twice together, and bengie is hoping to plan another one for next year.