1) Your very first book “Silver” is a short prose/poem that gets to the point from the first lines. It is a note found after the world ended on February 1st 2012. Does the end of the world represent something for you or has the world really ended?
The world did end for me in 2012, and thus for everyone else, too since I can’t know if anyone exists apart from me. Since then, we’ve been living in a ghost world that is actually an imagining in the very last microsecond of the apocalypse. Like when you dream an entire day but it was actually a minute as you were waking.
I don’t know when this non-world will end but it is fascinating to watch people moving and talking as if all this were really happening instead of being the fevered dream of a brain in acute hypoxic shock/death.
The basic question remains: am I a man who turned into a cockroach or am I a cockroach who once dreamed he was a man and was loved and wore nice clothes?
2) The words in your book embrace the photos of a nude girl, why did you choose to blend those two?
It’s pretty obvious that sex and death are the only real things. Everything else is a by-product or an avoidance of those two particles. Rather like John Wheeler’s dream of a scarcity of particles, I’m saying there are only two: sex and death. Sex has a spin of +1 and death has a spin of -1. When s and d collide, all manner of fascinating sub-particles can be emitted, in cloud chambers, beds and train carriages. Love (variable spin, tricky one), family, violence, greed, fear, money. Then we have the eosteric particles only synthesised by humans: poetry, novels, films and music.
Since ‘Silver’ is an account of how and why the world ended, I needed documentation of that end. Those pictures are an echo of that end, her breasts and cunt and smile and eyes are anisotropic remnants that, undeniably, point the observer in one direction and one direction only. The conclusion is clear. Her nude body is a theory of everything.
3) Do you believe that nudity can still shock people nowadays?
Oh yes. Because we are written to be eternally surprised, like kittens on wooden floors. As you’re reading this, there are millions of teenagers having their first kiss or giving/getting their first penetration and they all feel like no-one else has ever, ever done this before. Patently, if that were true, none of us would be here. Yet, we have that certainty ~ no-one’s fingers have probed here, oh, how shocking, no-one’s every put their penis in that orifice, oh, how daring!
The same for nudity. Obviously, there are cultures where nudity is routine but even then, it is confined within certain arenas because it cannot break its association with sex.
4) Besides photography and writing you are mostly well known for being the man behind the band White Town with whom you have achieved international success (White Town’s song “Your Woman” is one of the most classic songs of the 90’s). How does it feel to have your song on the charts around the world?
It was unbelievable. It’s another part of my life that truly doesn’t feel real. Like it’s out of a film. If it was a film, it’d be the geeky, fat kid scoring the winning touchdown and getting the hottest girl in the school.
5) What are your future plans regarding music and books?
I already have the next book ready and it will be released early March. It’s called 'The Projectionist’ and is a 50/50 collaboration with my friend and occasional White Town member, Natalie Barratt. It’s about a girl to boy transvestite and love. Photos and a short story.
As for music, I’m finishing off my final semester of Uni and then I’ll be straight into recording the next album. I have around eight or nine songs written already, it’s going well. Hopefully, it will be released early 2014?