I've had the privilege on a few occasions to work with photographer John Tsiavis and the incredibly driven and talented Nik Dimopoulos for promotion of his regular men only party TROUGH X
A form of communication developed in the '70s for gay men to signal
their intentions, fetishes, desires and identity to potential sexual
partners by wearing different coloured handkerchiefs. Investigating,
exploring and inspired by the gay subcultures of 'hanky codes', TROUGH X
is an exhibition of images and multimedia created and produced by John
Tsiavis and Nik Dimopolous.
Nik created the TROUGH X parties, setting out to put on an event unique
to the generic "gay party scene". Combining art and entertainment, he
hosted each party in a popup venue full of installations and projections
featuring some of the world's most progressive DJs like Mike Simonetti
The photo campaign is an integral part of the lead up to each party, depicting local men scouted by Dimopolous himself. The styling aesthetic and references to the hanky code verge on the abstract, allowing focus on the model's sex appeal. The images are often plastered all over side street walls in a very public display of male on male lust, and I always get a private hard on when I inevitably recognise the man featured on the latest poster as a regular passing face in the street, or even sometimes a friend who I now get to see in their underwear.
Dimopolous' objective is a clear one, he works tirelessly styling and refining each aesthetic for each party. His taste is impeccable, his heart generous and golden. I get a strong feeling of pride about my sexuality, greater than any achieved at a march or parade, to be part of his canon of images. His is an historic chapter of Australian queer culture.
All images Copyright Nik Dimopolous and John Tsiavis