William Lakin





Male Identity Blueprint combines original photographs, archival imagery, audio/transcribed text and video to explore the influences and pressures on men in modern Western society. Referencing intersections between anti-social behaviour, labour, sexuality and traditional gender roles, this multi-platform project offers both a critical and compassionate response to men’s inclination to engage in competitive and often harmful behaviours.   

Alluding to the difficulty men have in confronting or questioning their gendered self, the photographic work, titled Five Minutes After Birth, acts as a map of a male consciousness. Bouncing between performative fictions, observations and text, the sequence evokes the bombardment and variety of influences that men and boys experience from day one. 

The world is changing at an incredible pace. The concurrent rise of social media and social justice movements have led to greater awareness of important and often massively under-represented issues of social injustice, but at the same time has led to an over-simplification of the conversation around such issues and greater polarisation in people’s views. On top of this, right-wing populist governments in both the US and the UK have ushered in a new era of distrust in science and data in preference for tokenistic soundbites of solidarity for the working man. What influence will these confusing and overwhelming circumstances have on future gender relations?

This project is a work in progress and intended to be an open conversation. Please get in contact if you have any suggestions, criticisms or personal experiences you would like to share which you feel might contribute to the work.