The posters for the upcoming annual international AIDS benefit LIFE BALL to be held in Vienna, Austria on May 31, 2014 feature two well known LGBTQ artists. The photographer is the noted artist David LaChapelle and the female image in the photos belongs to transwoman model, activist and former “RuPaul’s Drag Race” star Carmen Carrera. The two photographs being used are titled “Once in the Garden” (I and II) and feature Ms Carrera posing as Eve in the Garden of Eden as an unknown male model posing as Adam lies at her feet. The primary difference between the two photos: Ms Carrera is “tucked” in one photo and full frontally nude in the other. (NSFW images at bottom of post.)
David LaChapelle will celebrate beauty at Life Ball 2014
The fight against HIV/AIDS has many faces and many ways of expression – each of them plays an important role in creating awareness and getting in touch with people. Life Ball 2014 will be enriched with some particularly aesthetic and artistic momentum, as world-famous contemporary photographer David LaChapelle joins forces with the pioneering AIDS charity event that will take place on May 31 at City Hall Square in Vienna, Austria.
The Life Ball Poster 2014 by David LaChapelle forms a central part of the creative collaboration and common message. The photographic artwork was mainly inspired by this year’s Life Ball motto “The Garden of Earthly Delights” and Hieronymus Bosch’ utopia of a diverse society, living together passionately and peacefully, as if the Fall of Man had never happened and people had never been expelled from Paradise. David LaChapelle’s interpretation shows the transgender woman and model Carmen Carrera naked in the midst of Bosch’s Garden scenery in both sexes, female and male. “Gender lines are blurred and every person is unique in how they see themselves. For me the body is more than something to be looked at as an object of sexual gratification. The body is a beautiful housing for the soul that we are celebrating in this picture”, David LaChapelle explains.
The claim of the artwork reads “I’M ADAM – I’M EVE – I’M ME” – words that Carmen Carrera identifies with: “Your gender should not matter in your heart or in the way you express your personality. We shouldn’t be afraid to stick to a model, because there are so many types of diverse people on this planet. My message is: beauty has no gender. At the end of the day beauty is beauty”, she says.
The image will apparently be displayed throughout Vienna from now until the Ball. (Can you imagine any American event using such an image and posting it publicly? People’s narrow little minds would explode…) Mr. LaChappelle is also having a major exhibition at Galerie Ostlicht in Vienna running from June 2 to September 14.
You might also remember that last year, another “RuPaul’s Drag Race” star, Season 4 winner SHARON NEEDLES was banned from performing at the Ball for a rather tame joke about Vienna being the birthplace of Hitler. Organizers of the ball subsequently sent her packing. (Despite the fact Hitler was actually born in Braunau am Inn…) The Viennese are hyper touchy about their Nazi past.