“To Survive on This Shore” Explores Aging as a Transgender Person in America
We hear a lot about transgender youth from the media; less so about transgender people as they age with the bodies that they fought so hard to claim. Such is the case with aging in general in our culture; it tends to be invisible.
Even still, there’s a real grace to aging, as Jess T. Dugan proves in “To Survive on This Shore,” a book and photo exhibition that will debut at projects+gallery in St. Louis, Missouri, on September 6.
The exhibition includes twelve 30″ x 40” prints, as well as ten 18″ x 24” prints, of older transgender people presenting their authentic selves to the cameras. The images show normal people, some of them coupled, some of them alone; the age on their faces a thing of profound beauty. Taken over the course of five years, the images capture people across the United States from a variety of different backgrounds. Accompanying texts, collected with the help of Vanessa Fabbre, a social worker and Assistant Professor at Washington University in St. Louis, tell the life stories of each of the people in the photographs.
Below is a selection of images from “To Survive on This Shore.” All images courtesy of projects+gallery and Jess T. Dugan.