To Survive on This Shore: Photographs and Interviews with Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Older Adults will feature twenty-two photographic portraits by Jess T. Dugan alongside accompanying interviews of the subjects by Vanessa Fabbre. The exhibition will be displayed on the University of New Mexico campus in the UNMAM’s Raymond Jonson Gallery.
As an exhibition, To Survive on This Shore is the product of over five years of research and photography by Dugan and Fabbre, who traveled across the United States to document the life stories of older transgender adults. The project is a response to the absence of nuanced representation of older transgender and gender nonconforming individuals in US culture. The subjects of To Survive on This Shore have a wide range of lived experiences across the intersections of gender, sexuality, race, class, and geographic location. Their narratives span the past ninety years and provide an important historical record of transgender history in the United States, as well as a complex reflection on the struggles and joys of growing older as transgender or gender nonconforming people.
Jess T. Dugan is an artist whose work explores issues of gender, sexuality, identity, and community. For the past decade, she has photographed people within queer and transgender communities, focusing on the complexities of identity, gender, and sexuality. Dugan earned a BFA in Photography from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, a Master of Liberal Arts in Museum Studies from Harvard University, and an MFA in Photography from Columbia College Chicago. She regularly exhibits internationally and has work in several museum collections. Dugan received the International Center of Photography’s 2019 Infinity Award for Emerging Photographers.