BY NATHANIEL, the artist
Being Queer is a gift, with responsibilities. I've spent a lifetime trying to uncover who I truly am and I'm unbelievably happy to share that some of that story with you.
It's been 8 years since we, started our little tribe of nudies and that time together has allowed me to explore, understand, appreciate, and love the identities and people within our Queer nudie community, our humanity
WHAT ARE YOUR PRONOUNS AND HOW DO YOU IDENTIFY?
Honestly, I don't know what my pronouns are. I'm playing with ZE/ZIR/ZERS and simultaneously feel a connection to no pronouns. But I also am not offended by the pronouns used. Because honestly, none of them fit.
Gender is funny and now that i know what gender means to me, I don't know that any gender is applicable. I've always been fascinated by the concepts of Two Spirit people in Native & First Nations cultures, but I'm not a member of those communities. The first time I heard "The Origins of Love" from "Hedwig and the Angry Inch" i felt a connection to that notion, that parts of both genders were ripped from me leaving me to explore that incompleteness and forge my own gender path. So, as I understand it now, I'm agender, meaning i don't identify with any gender, i'm the Queer, artsy, creator, social-activist that I've always been.
IF YOU HAD TO PUT YOUR ART IN A BOX WHAT WOULD THE LABEL ON THAT BOX SAY?
Queer fantasy & identity art.
DO YOU GET NAQED WITH FRIENDS? WHY OR WHY NOT?
Nudity, especially social nudity, helped me define who I am. So hell yeah I get naked with friends. It's the most honest thing I can do and I love connecting with Queer & Hetero friends in that way. Nudity is so beautiful.
WHAT BODY ISSUES HAVE YOU EXPERIENCED AND HOW HAS NUDITY HELPED YOU ADDRESS THAT?
I've been getting naked since day one. Growing up I was super active in dance, swimming, surfing, soccer, theatre, and worked in construction with my dad. I was pretty fit once I went through puberty. I danced all through college, as much as 40-60 hours a week. I got injured at 24, went through a huge personal loss and sunk into a deep depression.
Inactivity, mental health struggles, and emotional eating lead to really unhealthy coping mechanisms that changed my body and exacerbated those same issues. I've struggled to see myself in the mirror for years and be honest with myself was the start. I got naked to face myself and accept the body that I have.
Even on my biggest days, those days I felt most vulnerable, those days were the days that I got naked and stared at myself in the mirror. Those were the days that I sought out my nudie friends, because somehow being naked made me feel authentically who I am, made me feel accepted, unjudged, and loved.
I've never experienced the kind of gender/body dysmorphia that some Queers experience, but I have felt out of place most of my life, like I wasn't in the right place, the correct box for what society was try to ascribe to my physicality. Being naked helped me love the body that I am in, regardless of its physical state. I don't want to be seen in the gendered clothing that signal something that isn't true. Nakedness is when I feel most myself - no labels, no gender, no expectations, just authentically Nathaniel.
Queer Community through Social Nudity.