Suited

“Suited” is a life-size suit jacket made out of black card, collaged all over with the opened-out cartons from “Sustanon 250” (testosterone) injections, representing my personal usage for about 4 years.

For me, testosterone is a vital part of making my masculinity visible and experiential, like putting on a really well fitting suit.

Brighton Museum, exhibition, Transology, LGBT, Hove, Brighton, 2017

Why did I collect all those packets? It’s never been a question I’ve been able to answer very well. When I started, I certainly had no idea that they would eventually become part of an art work, so it wasn’t as if there was an original master plan behind it. In fact, I found it slightly hard to part with them – to cut them up to make the piece.

My best guess is that collecting them was to do with marking the length of my T usage in some way, marking a ‘trans age’ that differed from my biological age. It just seemed important at the time to keep them; to have some kind of visible, tactile record, squirrelled away in a cupboard.

I thought my stack of boxes was just me being peculiar, yet when I displayed the work, I discovered I wasn’t the only trans person that was collecting. I had more than one person approach me to say that they, too, held onto packets or similar items. On occasion they confessed they felt it was a bit odd that they did it and thought they were the only one.

Perhaps these are pictures from an adolescence most of us never had the opportunity to have; reflecting a life where both images of us as young people growing up, and images of us ‘growing up’ as adults can be challenging to own, to accept as part of a seamless whole.

Whatever the reason, the Museum of Transology is a wonderfully respectful repository for such precious records.

Simon Croft, Museum of Transology

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