Eye-catching and sometimes challenging, Jermaine Dean’s portrait series for Britomart’s Works On Paper art project is also full of affection and pride.
The third guest artist in our Works On Paper series, Jermaine Dean is a member of the artistic collectives FAFSWAG, Sa’VA’ge K’lub, Coven and The Order, as well as working in his “own dimension of Khaos” – a reference to the alter-ego he presents at FAFSWAG Vogue dance performances.
Although he’s currently working on a solo album entitled T H 1 R § T 3 E N (among other things), being part of a supportive artistic community is key to much of Jermaine’s multi-disciplinary work. This community is placed front and centre in the works he created for Works On Paper, in striking, rainbow-hued portraits of his friends and creative collaborators.
“I want to help my friends see themselves in a new light and a new world,” Jermaine says of the works. “These are people I’ve known for a long time. Everyone wants to live in a fantasy, and I’m one of the few people who my friends trust to create that for them. My images are like a gift to them. I want to give them power and encouragement to be whatever they want to become.”
The images are also “about visibility and agency and being proud of our queer brown bodies,” says Jermaine. It’s about community, and the uplifting quality of true friendships.”
During Pride, you can experience another facet of Jermaine’s work by attending the production Ethera at the Basement Theatre (February 12-16), for which he created the soundscape.
Jermaine Dean’s photographs for Britomart’s Works on Paper poster series were photographed by Joe Hockley.