Who’s in the mood for some Lightworship?
There are so many photographic images competing for our attention. But one look at work of Lightworship it will stop you dead in your tracks. The photographer known only as Victor is often referred to by his moniker Lightworship. His darkly, fetish-based photography started in the mid-1990’s. Lightworship began his artistic career taking pictures of the Atlanta underground fetish scene and found his way toward being the innovator of this fetish-styled genre. The following is a sampling of his earlier work.
The works by Lightworship aren’t designed to look ‘glamourous’, but are meant strike emotional chords within our psyche. As Marcel DuChamp once said, “Unless a picture shocks, it is nothing.” This is exactly what Lightworship images do. They provoke and stir while drawing you deeper into a mind-bending story. His choreographed images of rope and women make it difficult to look the other way.
With daring models positioned in all types of alluring situations, some may think they are the centerpiece of erotic images. However, if one were to look closer—they would see a consistent theme throughout; precisely executed Shibari (Japanese Rope Bondage). After years of shooting with rope, Lightworship ventured toward rigging his own images, and by the looks of it, has added a new dimension to his work. Now, these intricately tied ropes and knots are an integral part of his portraits. In fact, the meticulous and intense rope work is art within the art.
Lightworship’s technique is characteristic of the Showa style—relying primarily on strong lines, dramatic bondage scenes, and emotional enthusiasm. His innate ability to expertly blend Shibari with photography has resulted in striking images that communicate dramatic sensuality and supercharged sexuality. The raw force of emotion, although playful, will take you by surprise.
Although the chances that the playful, seductive cover of his new book “Strictly Bondage” might grab your attention, a cursory flick through won’t be enough to alert you to the hardcore nature of the images inside. Surprisingly intoxicating, Lightworship has mastered the art of black and white photography with a conscious mix of perfected lighting techniques, well-placed props, and expertly crafted bondage scenes. There is humor in his images too. Often dressed like, what appears to be a Mormon Missionary, Lightworship inserts himself within the set as the master of discipline.
No matter how you look at art, all photographs are propositions of one form or another. Every photograph is taken to be seen, every photographer seeks to elicit a response for the view. And the work of Lightworship will certainly do that. You’ll have to see it to believe it!
Goliath’s release “Strictly Bondage” by Lightworship is a small hardcover book with a collection of 220 of his black and white images in a book that is 128 pages. To see more work by Lightworship, visit his website or tumblr.1