Pixy and Moro: public portraits of private life

"It's never been easy to carry you"
"It's never been easy to carry you" © Pixy Liao

Chinese photographer Pixy Liao is showing her project Experimental Relationship at the 50th Rencontres d'Arles photography in the south of France. The series of photos is largely composed of portraits of Pixy herself and her partner and muse Moro.


"In the very beginning I was thinking: 'I’m a strong woman'. I wanted to carry him almost like a scarf on my shoulders. […] Because he’s very heavy, he pushes me down. But after some time, I realised, that’s just reality. It also speaks to a kind of heavy burden that I’m taking on in this relationship."

This is the way Chinese visual artist Pixy Liao describes the photo It’s never been easy to carry you that she presents at the 50th Rencontres d'Arles photography festival until 22 September.

This image belongs to a series called Experimental Relationship, an ongoing project she began in 2007.

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In her work, she stages photographs with her Japanese boyfriend Moro.

"My work is about the relationship that I have with my partner Moro, for more than 13 years. The images, most of the time, it’s both of us, self-portraits together. For me, my partner Moro is my muse. It’s very natural for me to photograph him.

"Moro is very open minded and supportive of my work. He usually agrees with what I want him to do. Now he feels this is just like part of life. Like going shopping. This is an activity we do together.

"There’s improvisation on his part and also he is the one who takes the picture. Actually Moro clicks the shutter in a lot of the images so he can choose the moment when the picture is taken."

"Playground" © Pixy Liao

Pixy Liao' s inspiration comes from her daily life and also from classical art or mass media.

"The images that I’m interested in, I want to change them into something that belongs to me. So I make a photograph of it."

The exhibition Experimental Relationship was shown in 2018 in South China, at the Jimei x Arles photo festival where she received the Women Photographers Award.

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