To Russia with Love
I am often on Facebook, as are virtually all young people and I was struck by the short films on the Internet of pestered and hassled young gays in Russia. At first I did not find it so serious that Putin is against homosexuals. That is everyone’s choice. I too do not want to love everyone. I decide for myself what my preferences are and with whom I want to hang around. But on seeing these films I felt sickened and I was disgusted. It is too much. If you do not like the fact that I am homosexual, I can learn to live with it. But to humiliate, attack and torture people is really going too far. I myself was always pestered and hit as a child at school. First as the young son of the teacher and after that because I was the queer of the class, I was the stereotype of a soft gay teenager. I had a barren youth as a result. There were however some people who sided with me and I still know who those people were and I am thankful for it.
Hence this campaign.
I myself have set to work with my graphic designer and I have made 17 patterns of Russian symbols and motifs for the creation of a collection of boxer shorts.
Together with leading photographer Herman Van Gestel, on Friday we held a photoshoot of young people who responded to the call that I placed on Facebook groups for models. The models therefore work on this for free because they think it is such a good idea. In particular in order to make Russian Gay Propaganda. I like the Russian look and have thus above all chosen muscular gymnast models with blond-brown hair.
The intention is to make a Russian Gay Calendar with the photos. To be available in Russian. As well as in English and Dutch. There will be a launch party for it on Saturday 28 September 2013 at The Dominican Hotel, hopefully in collaboration with the homosexual, lesbian and bisexual federation Cavaria, in Brussels, the capital of free Europe and also now the city in which I live.
I like nice images, beauty, masculine beauty.
And I want to show this with the calendar. That it is so beautiful.
The campaign is actually called "To Russia with Love".
The Calendar with the photos is available in Russian, English, Spanish, Dutch, French and German.
My chances on the Russian market have thus passed me by, and I hear that things were going so well there. People are so rich that they buy T-shirts costing 400 euros, etc. Things are going well there for the many millionaires. But anyway, if I cannot be who I am there, I would rather stay out of it.
The boxer shorts are designed in Belgium. They are a mixture of French-speaking and Dutch-speaking craftspeople and workshops. There is also 1 French-speaking model involved. The photographer is a Dutchman.
I love collaborations and synergies.
The Russian Pike Fish and the Moose are references to the hunting adventures of Putin for which he is so happy to receive the attention of the media.
It is truly a quiet revolution. Just imagine that you live in Russia where you cannot be gay, but under your clothing you are still able to wear a pair of protest shorts. Is that not a nice thought?
Available in S, M, L, XL and XXL. They are spacious. I like to have a little breathing space ;-)