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Within Quil Lemons’ Solo Picture Exhibition ‘Quiladelphia’ in Brandnew York – WWD

Quil Lemons admits one of the most disciplines in “Quiladelphia,” his latest layout of images, are proven in unflattering poses. However who’s to mention which of them?

“I think that that was a really fun theme to really tease out — what’s unflattering to you might be desirable to someone else,” says Lemons, whose first solo exhibition in Brandnew York is on view at Hannah Traore Gallery. 

The extremely intimate and prone works on view in “Quiladelphia” increase upon the younger photographer’s early step forward layout “Glitter Boy,” which featured Lightless males painted with glitter. A number of years next, he become the youngest photographer to execute a shield for Vainness Honest; he was once 23 when he shot Billie Eilish for the e-newsletter. Since after, Lemons’ paintings has been commissioned via labels together with Savage x Fenty, Calvin Klein, Moncler and Gucci. 

His unused ingenious layout, which delves into need, comprises nude portraiture. “The thing I noticed when I was exploring different museums is that there’s so many white bodies that get to be nude and placed on gallery walls, museum walls, and I kind of wanted to shake that up a bit,” he says.

“When you say those things — Black queer photographer — there’s a lot of limits that society places on what that needs to look like in terms of respectability, and then also in terms of what I should be doing with my career now,” provides Lemons, who was once born and raised in Philadelphia and is now primarily based in Brandnew York. “What does it look like to be a Black queer photographer shooting Black bodies?”

Lemons notes that in spite of capturing high-profile disciplines in his editorial and business paintings, he sought after to counter the “expectation of who could be shot by me,” he says. “I wanted to democratize my sitter, but also the idea of who was worthy of being shot by me.”

He describes all the disciplines in “Quiladelphia” as pals — some are skilled fashions, some are from OnlyFans — however they’re “all boys,” says Lemons. “Some people are trans, some people are older, some people are younger. I really wanted to show a wide range of what is maleness? And what does that look like under a queer lens?”

Paintings from “Quiladelphia.”


With “masculinity” as the continued thesis for his ingenious paintings, Lemons describes “Quiladelphia” as an exploration of the Lightless male frame that still speaks to the universality of need. Lots of the disciplines in his images are pictured in diverse states of sexual engagement and tone and occasion the exhibition is provocative, Lemons’ hope is that the pictures impress dialog.

Installation view of

Set up view of “Quiladelphia”


Paintings from “Quiladelphia.”


“I wanted my viewers to be able to drop ego, to then question their own morality. I’m hoping that you drop your judgment. Some people might not be able to with the subject matter — but I think that’s the whole point,” he continues. “I wanted to bring in ideas of desirability; I also wanted to think about that through the lens of where my personal politics don’t really align with desire. And I think that’s the same for everyone else…your attraction might not be aligned with who you are on a day to day basis,” he provides. “I think that will be a really fun conversation to have because I think that immediately people are going to be like, this is only about the Black body, and it’s not,” he says. “My own sexuality isn’t limited to race. I don’t think anyone’s is; we’re all human.”

Lemons objectives to middle “Quiladelphia” in queer pleasure and peace, and hopes that the humanity of his pictures glimmers thru for the viewer.

“There’s so many things that we can expand upon, and one I wanted to really tap into with the show is the human experience of living life,” he says. “I am trying to make more space for Black queer boys to just exist,” he provides. “Giving space for free expression of selfhood; that’s the goal.”

However in lieu than provide an explanation for what lives inside his images, Lemons desires audience to look for themselves and draw their very own connections and conclusions.

“[The images] are gonna tell you what they are,” he says. “I don’t really have to explain too much when you look at this work. I think it says so much.”

The exhibition is on view thru Nov. 4.

Installation view of

Set up view of “Quiladelphia.”


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