Representations of older transgender people are nearly absent from our culture and within artistic realms, and those that do exist are often one-dimensional. To Survive on this Shore combines photographs of transgender and gender-variant people over the age of fifty with interviews about their life experiences in regards to gender, identity, age, and sexuality and provides a nuanced view into the complexities of aging as a transgender person. By combining our experiences working as a photographer and social worker within the transgender community, we hope to create a project that is simultaneously highly personal and socially relevant.
Since 2013, we have photographed and interviewed over 60 people throughout the United States. We intentionally seek out subjects whose lived experiences exist within the complex intersections of gender identity, age, race, ethnicity, sexuality, socioeconomic class, and geographic location.
It is our intention to publish a book of the photographs and interviews as well as to exhibit the work within fine art gallery and museum spaces, bridging both the social science and fine art realm. Ultimately, we desire to provide visibility to a community that is often overlooked, both because of their age as well as their gender, and to encourage empathy, understanding, and dialogue.