John Arsenault’s “American Queen, American Dream: 30 years of Self Portraits” featured at PDN:
With an eye for the unexpected and exaggerated, Arsenault constructs scenarios that explore facets of his personal relationships, his sexuality, and his identity. He usually photographs himself shirtless or naked. There’s a lot of fur, tight shorts and lounging on nice furniture. At turns playful and serious, in the images we see the proliferation of his tattoos and the soft face of his youth evolve into a chiseled jaw line. The titles tell us that he left New York for Palm Springs, Los Angeles and Provincetown. The earliest photographs reveal periods of longing, heartbreak and vulnerability, while the later images are a nuanced look at the dynamics of his marriage.