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Sex and web: Joshua Gibbons presents how internet is shaping sex culture

Joshua Gibbons Sex Site COVER

Joshua T Gibbons is a documentary photographer working within the area of social realism through portraiture, taking great inspiration from the likes of Alec Soth, Richard Mosse and Tom Hunter.

Joshua considers his country of birth to be ‘a perplexing mixture of patriotism and self-ridicule, isolated from the rest of progressive mainland Europe, Britain has its own set of antiquated cultural values that dictate much of the political and social atmosphere of the country’. It is this social climate that the native Londoner aims to explore throughout his work.

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About ‘Sex Site’:

Worldwide access to the Internet and the emergence of an omnipresent social media is the defining spectacle of our time. With its reach expected to hit some 2.95 billion people by 2020, approximately one-third of Earth’s entire population, it has never been easier to find like-minded people, whether that be within your immediate surroundings or far further afield. Now permeating almost every facet of our daily lives, even those most intimate areas, social media looks set to become ever more a fixture of contemporary life.

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The Internet is beginning to shape the sexual culture of Britain. The vanguard of this movement is the growing number of people that are utilizing online mediums to explore their sexual identities. Where those with an interest in BDSM, swinging and other “alternative” sexual lifestyles previously found it much harder to seek out like-minded individuals, they can now, through online means, become part of the community of their choice with relative ease.

The photographer Joshua T Gibbons’ series, Sex Site, aims to explore this cultural shift. Shot throughout the south of England over a two-year period, the series consists of individuals between the ages of 18-35 that Gibbons sourced through the primary sexual social media platforms in Britain.

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Photographed in their homes, participants all utilize social media sex sites to engage in sexual endeavors including swinging, BDSM, daddy/little girl, and dogging. The imagery, accompanied by verbatim reproductions of the visceral messages received by the artist and participants during the making of the project, contrast unfiltered sexual context with humanizing and relatable portraiture. Sex Site is a rare and essential look into the world that, despite its emerging popularity, remains largely hidden from public view.

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