Ordinary People - PhMuseum

Ordinary People

Ksenia Kuleshova

2018 - Ongoing

The ban on "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations" was signed into the Russian federal law by Vladimir Putin in June 2013. This law, also known as the “anti-gay law”, is just one more example of a tendency to regression to a more intolerant society and the attempt of the Russian government to redirect attention away from more serious problems.

For such a long time this topic has been a taboo. It’s no longer illegal to be gay (the restriction was lifted in 1993), a homophobic atmosphere is still there. After all stories about chechen gay men it has become a big issue in Russia.

Little attention was paid to trying to find a new angle for this topic. In my work I want to discover an ability of ‘ordinary people’ to enjoy the moment and value the happiness and joy of everyday life despite an open homophobia on the television, by politicians in the media and the Russian church. My protagonists still care about not showing their feelings in public but I am happy to say that they are not afraid to show their faces in my story.

I believe that our world needs another approaches, perspectives and solutions. This project is a continuation of my attempt of trying to find something positive even in the worstest situations. My work aims to show to the international community the deeper insight to the topic, to take steps toward a more tolerant Russian society, to start discussions and debates.

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  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 04/08/2018. A gay couple in the gay bar “The Blue Oyster Bar (18+)”. “The Blue Oyster Bar” is one of the most famous gay clubs in Saint Petersburg.

  • Russia, Moscow, 10/04/2019. Alena Zhogol (left, 22) and Katya Rosolovskaya (right, 23) in their flat. They are together for 3 years and are openly gays.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 17/08/2018. The portrait of Maria Krugovaya in her flat in Saint Petersburg. Maria Krugovaya (35) from Saint Petersburg is a photographer (sensual portrait, erotica, nude) and openly gay.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 12/08/2018. Maria Krugovaya and Anastasia Vyadro are cuddling at home. They are together for 7 months and plan to start living together soon.

    Maria Krugovaya (35) from Saint Petersburg is a photographer (sensual portrait, erotica, nude) and open gay. Anastasia Vyadro (29) from Saratov is a choreographer, dancer and an actor in the immersive show “Faceless”.

  • Belarus, Minsk, 07/04/2018. Maxim Avdeev (right) and Victor Repetsky (left) take a shower in a rental flat in Minsk. Maxim Avdeev (25) from Agryz has lived in Saint Petersburg for 5,5 years already. He is an english teacher, a vogue dancer and a model.
    Victor Repetsky (22) from Nakhodka has lived in Saint Petersburg for 4 years. He is a professional vogue dancer (House of BONCHINCHE), a dance teacher and a model. Maxim and Victor are openly gay and are together for 8 months.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 30/07/2018. Anna Gavrilova (left) and Jane Sytenko (right) on the sofa with Jane’s mother Irina (in the middle). Anna (25) and Jane (30) have recently celebrated one year dating anniversary. They have a tradition to ask each other if they agree to marry each day at 16:16.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 30/05/2018. Miss Tekila smokes in the gay club “Central Station SPB” after her performance. Alexandr Govorukhin (30) from Montschegorsk has lived in Saint Petersburg for 12 years already. He is a travesti actor (stage name is Miss Tekila) at the “Central Station SPB” gay club, “The Blue Oyster” gay bar and a makeup artist. Alexandr is openly gay.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 12/08/2018. Maria Krugovaya (left) and Anastasia Vyadro (right) are brushing their teeth in Maria’s flat in Saint Petersburg. They are together for 7 months and plan to start living together soon.
    Maria Krugovaya (35) from Saint Petersburg is a photographer (sensual portrait, erotica, nude) and open gay. Anastasia Vyadro (29) from Saratov is a choreographer, dancer and an actor in the immersive show “Faceless”.

  • Belarus, Minsk, 01/04/2018. Maxim Avdeev (left) and Victor Repetsky (right) are kissing at the vogue ball in Minsk before their performance.
    Maxim Avdeev (25) from Agryz lives in Saint Petersburg for 5,5 years already. He is HR and the Head of hospitality management and quality of service in the “Bekitzer“ bar, an english teacher, a vogue dancer and a model.
    Victor Repetsky (22) from Nakhodka lives in Saint Petersburg for 4 years. He is a professional vogue dancer (House of BONCHINCHE), a dance teacher and a model. Maxim and Victor are open gays and are together for 8 months.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 12/08/2018. Private party “Infinity” for girls only. This time it was held in the nightclub “Emigrants” in Saint Petersburg.
    Ksenia Infinity is one of the two persons who organise these parties in Saint Petersburg and Moscow. Infinity parties are held approx two times in a month.

  • Russia, Moscow, 17/04/2019. Sofia Beridze (21) is a transgender woman. She has both Georgian and Russian nationality. Her georgian family knows and accept her identity.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 12/08/2018. Maria Krugovaya (left) is caressing her girlfriend Anastasia Vyadro (right) who is caressing their cat Sam at the same moment.They are together for 7 months and plan to start living together soon.
    Maria Krugovaya (35) from Saint Petersburg is a photographer (sensual portrait, erotica, nude) and open gay. Anastasia Vyadro (29) from Saratov is a choreographer, dancer and an actor in the immersive show “Faceless”.

  • Russia, Moscow, 18/04/2019. Arina Starykh (23) is going through her wardrobe. She is openly gay and wants to emmigrate to France.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 03/08/2018. Kirill Chkanov (26) hugs his boyfriend Alexandr Govorukhin (30) in Alexandr’s flat in Saint Petersburg.
    Kirill Chkanov (26) from Samara is ABA therapist. He lives in Saint Petersburg for 4 years. His family and friends knows about his homosexuality. Kirill works with children and prefers not to tell their parents that he is gay.
    Alexandr Govorukhin (30) from Montschegorsk lives in Saint Petersburg for 12 years already. He is a travesti actor (stage name Miss Tekila) at the “Central Station SPB” gay club, “The Blue Oyster” gay bar and a makeup artist. Alexandr is an open gay.
    Alexandr and Kirill are together for 4 months.

  • Russia, Obninsk, 22/04/2019. Lisa Kamenskaya (21) in her room. She is openly gay.

  • Russia, Moscow, 11/04/2019. Elena Grigor'evna Gusyatinskaya (73) in her living-room. She is openly gay and she holds a private archive of LGBT-media issued in Russia from 1990s.

  • Russia, Saint Petersburg, 17/08/2018. Victor Repetsky and Maxim Avdeev are hugging each other near the nightclub in Saint Petersburg.
    Maxim Avdeev (25) from Agryz lives in Saint Petersburg for 5,5 years already. He is HR and the Head of hospitality management and quality of service in the “Bekitzer“ bar, an english teacher, a vogue dancer and a model.
    Victor Repetsky (22) from Nakhodka lives in Saint Petersburg for 4 years. He is a professional vogue dancer (House of BONCHINCHE), a dance teacher and a model. Maxim and Victor are open gays and are together for 8 months.


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