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This issue was made in Bangkok, Thailand. This is one of the world's gay wonderland, a place that serves as a safe haven and holiday hotspot for LGBTQ travellers from everywhere, but what is it like to actually live here? Is it the queer paradise so many visitors perceive it to be? That's what we aimed to discover through our Elska adventure to the Thai capital.
In Elska Bangkok we met a bunch of ordinary local guys from the city's LGBTQ community, who we then present them to you through intimate photography and personal stories. The result is, in brief, that some of the lore is true, some of the stereotypes are indeed real, but there's also a streak of reservedness, meekness, and a desire to keep what's private private. This means that the men who took part in this issue truly gave a lot to open up for us, and we're eternally grateful for it.
Each of the men we met were photographed in the streets of their town, dressed in their own style, and also at home, dressed less or sometimes not dressed at all. Each also wrote their own story to go with the photos, the topics of which vary greatly. There's Chang C's tale of looking at heartbreak through a Buddhist lens; there's Wuthichai J's piece on how key fashion is important to his identity; there's Hamza S's reflection on searching for a home in Bangkok after fleeing his native Morocco; there's Oat M's story of growing up in a brothel and how this shapes his life and artistic endeavours today; and there's so much more! Elska's main goal is to make you readers feel like you've truly met these men in person, and we feel that the Bangkok photography and stories do this especially well!
‘Elska Bangkok’ features ten chapters, dedicated to the following local participants: Chang C, Wuthichai J, Ark S, Hamza S, Om T, Tawan Z, Oat M, Natthasit B, Bond T, and Dao fah.
'Elska Bangkok’ is 180 pages. The print version is 170mm x 240mm (approx 6.7 x 9.4 in), full colour, sewn-bound, offset-printed, and on 130gsm (90lb) internal matte paper and 280gsm (110lb) textured coated coverage paper with flaps. One random Elska Collectors' Postcard is inserted inside.