Shine Shivan

l r 5 of 183 works

Rape of Ganymede, 2009

Taxidermy eagle and crane wings, semi-precious stones, fabric, cotton thread

18 x 40 x 12 inches

This work enunciates the paradoxes behind the homoerotic instinct and the freedom and force of sexual pleasure between two homosexual males.

Rape of Ganymede* highlights the complexities of the gay male identity. The eagle wings represent independence, pride, resilience, and physical strength-- all traditional attributes of masculinity. The crane wings signify the diffident, emasculated identity of the stereotypical gay male. Here we see the dominant male triumphantly penetrating through his weaker, more effeminate partner.

*Ganymede is the young, beautiful boy that became one of Zeus lovers. Zeus fell in love with Ganymede when he spotted him herding his flock on Mount Ida. Zeus then came down in the form of an eagle to carry Ganymede to Mount Olympus where Ganymede became cupbearer to the gods. Zeus affair with Ganymede was thought to be a religious justification for homosexuality within the Greek culture; yet others state that this is merely a reflection of Greek life at that time.