I have known KG since 2014, when I mentored him for the very first Exposure+ Mentor Program. He produced a stunning series of stylised portraits of transmen and transwomen living in Kuala Lumpur called Continuum.
Much time has passed since then, and recently I discovered that he had been off the scene for some time, but has since produced this piece, which formed the subject of his presentation at the KL International Photoawards 2017 in Kuala Lumpur, titled loosely as Between Lust and Longing.
KG is one of those rare and extremely talented artists who, can and will surprise you, unpredictable and yet photographs with such personal conviction, and dedication, often obsessive, with every kind of camera he can find, and in this series, his phone, mainly. I think he often lives on the edge.
“This project began as a body of work documenting my personal struggle with crystal meth which started in the year 2011. A quick search online for crystal meth will tell you a great deal of its dangers on the mind and body, the demographic, its use is usually associated with, and some statistics on the estimated number of people currently thought to be using meth in communities around the world – all of which would be completely misleading.” KG
“In the early days of my use, by chance I’d stumbled upon a group of users among the gay community which at the time I thought to be an isolated incident, though soon after I started realising that the community as a whole was on the verge of an epidemic and with it, my battle to stay clean started to decline.”
KG Krishnan was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in 1989. A journalist, photographer and spoken word artist, his art explores ideas concerning sexuality, gender politics and the intimacy of human relationships in the contexts of contemporary culture.
As a commercial photographer and art director, KG Krishnan’s clientele comprises design institutions, fashion designers, advertising agencies, filmmakers, musicians and lifestyle publications for whom he produces images, film and fashion productions. His work, both writing and photography, has been widely published around Southeast Asia and occasionally appears in European and American publications.
He currently does visual consulting and art direction for production and advertising clients in Kuala Lumpur while working on personal projects.
His work can be viewed at www.kgkrishnan.format.com