Written by Jack Moss
Dielamb, the German moniker that Matt Lambert's thousands of Instagram followers know him by, was born in Los Angeles, though he is now more often associated with Berlin, his beloved adopted home.
Vitium, his latest zine, a collaboration with his husband, Jannis Birsner, is an all-out homage to the queer-core mags of the 1980s, a catalogue of hard-core images in photocopier-esque black and white. Lambert captures these boys in moments of ecstasy and intimacy, unguarded, nude and invariably glorious.
Lambert’s work unravels to tell a story of youth and subculture, of tender intimacy and malleable sexuality. It’s a portrait of what it means to be young, queer and in lust, making him a natural successor to Nan Goldin and Larry Clark, both of whom he counts as influences.
Los Angeles never really felt like home to Lambert. “I felt like I was born in the wrong place,” he says. “I just didn’t feel like I connected with the city in any way. All the work around me was soft, flat. There was no buzzing of any work there.”
It’s something that Lambert achieves through the trust he elicits from those he photographs. Most are friends, people he hangs out with. The relationship between photographer and subject is important. It should feel natural, a collaboration. He compares it with mainstream fashion photography, which he sees as exploitative.
“It’s like, ‘Let’s get some straight boys and make them do sexy things they can’t really wrap their heads around,’” he says. “I would rather shoot two incredibly adjusted intelligent and open-minded gay men being sexually intimate with each other, than have some straight boy pull down a boxer short and expose a butt cheek.” READ MORE
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