Timothée Bârrus/ The Legend of Tristan's Moon


No Cinematheque dancer or other animals were harmed in the making of this film.
Cinematheque Films: The Studio Arts Education, and Show Me Your Life students (Real Stories Gallery): Students are allowed access to fair use art materials and mixed media in the teaching of iconic manipulation in photographic, video and film production. Representations and facsimiles posted here are presented as teaching tools and instruments employed to instruct students in the techniques and application of mixed media art and collage. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act allows art-teaching entities the fair use of such materials in classroom and teaching-research applications. 
Many people (I have a big fucking, frequently profane mouth) know the story of Tristan and his moon. It’s just an ordinary story. Nothing extraordinary about it. Tristan was frequently up all night. He never slept well. In retrospect, I am able to now recognize some (only a little) of the manic aspects to his personality. There is a caveat to this. Making any kind of sense from Tristan’s psychology always was and remains a fool’s errand. It would be highly arrogant to cluck-cluck that you know something other people do not know; this makes you morally superior; when what it really makes you is simply pompous. Tristan had to see the moon on an island one full-moon night. He could not be talked out of it. I usually fail to explain that there was always a method to the madness. It never feel compelled to explain everything. But Tristan was a photographer (and was always borrowing my cameras) and there were no lights or people on the island. This makes photography, especially with a telephoto lens, far more visceral an experience than attempting to photograph anything more awesome than almost anything we could possibly contrive in any urban environment on the planet. “Far more visceral an experience” describes Tristan to a molecule. 

Tim Barrus/ blueridges and the trees (Show Me Your Life, Jamie Ray)


Jaime Ray’s father is disabled. Jaime Ray takes care of his dad. Jaime Ray says you can’t get HIV from hugs. Jaime Ray does not have a mom. Jaime Ray is seven now. Jaime Ray was six when we started making videos for Show Me Your Life. 
We put some of the things Jaime Ray thinks are funny (like his friend Roberto) in the video. There were some things we did not put in the video. Jaime Ray’s picture when he was beat up at school was not funny. We did not put it in the video. 
Where Jaime Ray lives, one person a day dies from HIV/AIDS. The number of one a day is amazingly consistent. 
When your parents die, you have to go live with someone else. Jaime Ray is sad. He will run away. 



Tim Barrus/ Benchmarks (Show Me Your Life)


Timothée Bârrus
Nothing is forever. Sometimes it takes a trainwreck to wake us up to the change going on around us we are not inherently aware of. Benchmarks will feature people who have embarked upon a personal journey of change. We will feature change in relationships. Change in the roles we play. Change in art. Benchmarks are standards or points of reference against which things may be compared or assessed. But benchmarks are empty and ephemeral if we are not making them ourselves — and internalizing possibility — where the only points of meaningful reference can be measured against standards we construct that are made in the workshop of originality.

Tim Barrus/ What's Goin' On (Show Me Your Life, Umthombo)


Timothée Bârrus
It is summer in South Africa. Umthombo is headed for the beach. What’s goin’ on.
Mother, mother
There’s too many of you crying
Brother, brother, brother
There’s far too many of you dying
You know we’ve got to find a way
To bring some lovin’ here today - Ya
Father, father
We don’t need to escalate
You see, war is not the answer
For only love can conquer hate
You know we’ve got to find a way
To bring some lovin’ here today
Picket lines and picket signs
Don’t punish me with brutality
Talk to me, so you can see
Oh, what’s going on
What’s going on
Ya, what’s going on
Ah, what’s going on
In the mean time
Right on, baby
Right on
Right on
Father, father, everybody thinks we’re wrong
Oh, but who are they to judge us
Simply because our hair is long
Oh, you know we’ve got to find a way
To bring some understanding here today
Picket lines and picket signs
Don’t punish me with brutality
Talk to me
So you can see
What’s going on
Ya, what’s going on
Tell me what’s going on
I’ll tell you what’s going on - Uh
Right on baby
Right on baby 

Tim Barrus/ Just a whore

Tristan is no longer with us. He wanted very much to show us his life. But that life only had a limited run. Tristan was a sex worker. It defined him. But it also killed him. He was young. The tricks (seemingly straight men most of whom had families and children Tristan’s age) like their boys young. Such boys are exploited, abused, addicted, forced into sexual situations they are not equipped to handle, bought and paid for, trafficked, fucked in the mouth, fucked in the ass, torn apart, denied a childhood, frequently murdered, at high risk for HIV infection, denied access to an education, kicked out of schools, kicked out of families, incarcerated in institutions where they are raped, forced to turn to survival sex, and when they’re sick, they turn to the only family they have: other sex workers, junkies, pimps, and drug dealers.
Many commit suicide. For some, HIV/AIDS is suicide. Video is only a representation. It can take many forms. Just a Whore is the shadow of a life. It is not a life. Tristan wanted people to know something about the anguish he had endured. I cannot say I have captured the heart and soul of that. What I can say is that if any part of this video disturbs you, Tristan would have gone for that jugular as well. He did it every day. I went out of my way to tone this down. To make it palatable for you. Tristan was infamous in his small circle of boywhores. Men on the street, and men on the metro used to stare at him. “Come on, let’s run,” he’d say. “All I’m known for is getting fucked.”
If I could change anything, I would change that. He was more than a rare object men could pay to have sex with. He was a kid. Like any other kid. He had dreams and ambition and he was smart. Smart enough to survive living on his own in a very adult, abusive environment. How many videos have to be made before we can admit that there are children our culture just throws away like trash.
“We love our children.”
I am told this particular piece of dog shit every day. What you love is a compliant image of who and what you think you can make obedient and manage. Children are human beings. They have thoughts. They have feelings. They’re trying to make sense of the world around them. They have very few rights. “But we love our children.”
I just don’t believe a word of it. And either did Tristan.
tim barrus

Tim Barrus/ Le Juene Photographe



Tim Barrus/ IPadArt

Tim Barrus: An Experiment: iPadArt

I made this specifically to see what the art might look like, and feel like on iPad.


Tim Barrus/ Børn i vejen: Nøgenhed er forbudt

Børn i vejen: Nøgenhed er forbudt



Tim Barrus/ You See Your Gypsy

Tim Barrus/ Nothing's Wrong on Mars



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