Pleasure places

by Elodie Chrisment

Those sheds are not only spectral shapes that sometimes emerge from a detour. You can easily feel the subtle touch of a human being, of a woman far from the images that comes to mind with this “profession”. She invests herself in the place, projects herself and builds a future. Personal items, decoration in order to improve comfort for men they won’t judge. Those details are intended to obscure the undergrowth and their precariousness; so many things trying to make their situation normal, applying a varnish of day-to-day reality that one cannot suspect.
 
At crossroads filled with women from around the world, partly held by the most violent pimps and by one of the most despicable forms of modern slavery, you find those independent prostitutes, often transvestites from south America. They are fiercely attached to their project for a better life. They meet women, other human beings full of dignity and fulfilled choices. For these people facing misery too soon, dealing with the question of their female identity in a man's body, prostitution is a way of making a life; an apartment, sometimes children, a husband or boyfriend, and a schedule similar to anyone, there's life.
 
During gray days, of course, in a place of relegation, the forest becomes a creepy middle-age grove, home of danger, filled with marginals, violence and insecurity. And yet that's where these women offer their charms and try to make a welcoming place; the sheds at first, sometimes a truck, like an oriental palace, and their unspeakable fierce and joyful courage.
 
Censored exhibition in Touroing _ France 2014
Finalist Inge Morath/Magnnum Award 2014
 
These transsexuals are fiercely attached to their project for a better life. They meet women, other human beings full of dignity and fulfilled choices. For these people facing misery too soon, dealing with the question of their woman identity in a man's body, prostitution is a way of making a life; an apartment, sometimes children, a husband or boyfriend, and a schedule similar to anyone, there's life.