Nicole, Ho Yan Pun

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Hand 1
photograph
12”X18”

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Hand 2
photograph
12”X18”

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Hand 3
photograph
12”X18”

 

Artist statement

Hand project by Ho Yan Pun Nicole As a lesbian artist from Hong Kong, I choose lesbian’s hands as a site of resistance. Through photographing and exposing different lesbian’s hand gestures in public, I am making a political statement to show the existence of the lesbian community, that has been invisible in a lot of Asian countries. Under the British colonial governance, Hong Kong had a criminal law against male homosexuality before 1990s. Any male to male homosexual behavior were banned. In 1991, the Legislative Council decriminalized the private homosexual behavior. These law address specifically to male homosexuality. The society largely believed that only the male homosexual behavior involved the act of insertion. It was considered indecent and would cause diseases. On one hand, the legislation oppressed the right of male homosexuals. On the other hand, this oppression reveals the existence of this marginal group. Their voice and desire of fighting for their right becomes more and more explicit nowadays. Lesbian’s voice is always hidden. In Hong Kong, lesbians do not have a clear social space. Even in the US, when it comes to bars, the number of lesbian bars can hardly match up to that of gay bars. This community is always invisible, especially in Asian culture. Obviously, there are body politics involved. The society presumes lesbian sex do not have the insertion as sexual activity. Their hands are not regarded as “sexual organs”. As a lesbian, I believe hands are precious sexual organs, just as how penis signifies male power. Lesbian hand embodies lesbian phallus, power, fantasy, erotica. Therefore, by showing intimate hand gesture, it is a sign of revolt, a sign of recognition of this community.