The work of photographer Michael Bailey-Gates is the subject of this issue of MATTE Magazine, a periodical with a specific interest in queer issues, and often dedicated to one artist per publication. Bailey-Gates, an American artist, presents a body of work composed of single and group portraits, as well as staged shots, in both black-and-white and color, which, as Horace D. Ballard, Ph.D., writes in his introductory essay to this issue, “don’t so much interrogate gender as bypass it,” an analysis that suits the Bailey-Gates’ own position that “Gender isn’t real. I want photography to support this fact. I want to challenge binary systems of thinking and overcome them.”
Bailey-Gates’ photographs are intimate and joyous celebrations, at once introspective and playful, drawing on influences ranging from classical portraiture to Robert Mapplethorpe, Marc Jacobs, and Nan Goldin. Within this collection of photographs, the artist presents himself as subject as much as image creator.
MATTE Magazine is a platform for new ideas in photography edited and published since 2010 by Matthew Leifheit.