About the Transworkers project
An exhibition of trans people, by trans people, for trans people – and everyone else.
The project started almost two years ago. It is a collection of photographs of “TQI” people at work, and includes people who are female to male, male to female, non binary or intersex. (Some may also be L,G, or B too.)
Transgender workers are not a new phenomenon, but past media coverage has focussed primarily on the curiosity of their being transgender. It has seldom been about the individual’s personal value.
This exhibition has a different perspective: it seeks to show people who happen to fall under the broad umbrella term of ‘trans’ as being a vibrant and positive part of the workforce, with a wide range of skills – rather than being social curiosities.
Historically, the intensely negative pressures put upon the trans community have made it very hard for them to live and especially to find work. Even now, many are rejected or marginalised in the workplace because of who they are. This often results in very low self esteem for the individual, who may carry this self-image for life; poverty is the outcome, and this serves to feed the image.
It’s a vicious circle.
The subjects in the photographs are positive role models.
With these photographs, I want to show us all what is being lost. Trans people lose, yes – but so does society as a whole. We lose what they can offer, and employers lose skilled, talented and capable individuals whose resilience has enabled them to overcome difficulties presented to them. They are a very valuable resource.
If the people in the photographs can find work, so can others. I’d like the photographs to start us all thinking toward that – trans people, employers, and the public at large.
About the photographer
Stella Michaels is an ex-university lecturer and award winning portrait and landscape photographer who is herself transgender.
The Transworkers project is a work in progress!
If you would like to be included in future exhibitions (which may appear on the internet,) please contact Stella by:
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
Facebook: StellaPix Brighton
I would love to hear from people who consider themselves to be somewhere on the “T,Q, or I” (Transgender, Queer, or Intersex) parts of the spectrum and who are currently, or have been, in full or part-time PAID work which is (or was) sufficient for them to live on.
I’d ideally like to shoot at your workplace and permission for this might be needed.
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What I’d like to happen to the exhibition:
The project is a work in progress, and is slowly growing.
In the past it has shown at:
– 2016 Brighton Pride,
– The Friends Centre Community College in Brighton,
– The New Steine Hotel & Bistro during LGBT History Month, and
– The Marlborough Hotel, a key LGBT venue in Brighton.
– Featured on Latest TV & YouTube.
However, I feel that it should not be seen as primarily an LGBT issue, as its message concerns us all – so as it grows, I’d like it to become more visible to the general public, and remain so – and outside of Brighton too.
Library and museum exposure is an excellent way to do this.
It see it as a travelling show.