Part of the new vanguard of image makers, Myles Loftin is an artist, storyteller, and creative collaborator based in Brooklyn but very much on the world’s radar. Brands like Calvin Klein, Converse, GCDS, Nike, and Under Armour commission him for ad campaigns, and publications like Paper, The Cut, Garage, i-D, and The Fader turn to him for editorials that resonate with discerning audiences.
Myles’ work, known for an often playful sensibility and an intimacy that unite viewer and subject, is driven by his desire to show up for underrepresented and misrepresented groups—because as a queer Black man, he knows the power of visibility. “We look to the media for ideas of what our future can be,” says Myles, “and if you don’t see yourself represented, it’s very hard for you to imagine a future for yourself.”
A budding tastemaker, Myles was featured in the campaign “Polaroid Originals and Ryan McGinley Present the New Originals,” and he co-curated a panel for Parsons School of Design’s “Nth Degree Series” celebrating “thinkers, visionaries, and creators who define the cutting edge.” In 2019, at the age of 21, he was invited to speak at Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. The following year, Forbes named him one of 2020’s “30 Under 30” in the category of “Art and Style.” And this is just the beginning…
In The Life
During the spring of 2019, I took a semester abroad at London College of Communication, and during my six months in London, I had a lot of time to myself. I spent a lot of time trying to make sense of the realities of my existence as a 22-year-old black queer man. I was thinking about the way that I, and people like me, navigate society. I was also thinking about the ways we have or have not been represented within media.
As a black queer person, conversations around representation and inclusion within the visual culture (specifical photography) become complicated. We are often ostracized in both the general queer populous as well as the black community. And our inclusion in the overall canon of photography and art is scarcely documented, despite significant contributions to history.
My current project “In The Life” expands upon this exploration and focuses on the exclusion of black queer life in photography. “In The Life” is queering black history by challenging the lack of visual representation accorded to queer identities. I am creating an archive of images that black queer people can look to for solace or inspiration. The photographs depict black queer people both in public and intimate settings performing everyday tasks. Extreme care is given to each photograph in order to elevate the mundanity and humanity of our collective lived experiences.
To view more of Myles Loftin’s work please visit their website.