What parts of the LGBTIQ* community do you identify with? What words describe who you feel?
From the age of 10, I define myself as bisexual, with varying degrees over the years. At present, however, when it comes to the question of orientation, I would describe myself more as gay, but not fully either. I rather do not like to clearly declare on this topic. As for sexuality I identify as a transgender man.
So bisexual people can feel their orientation as a spectrum that can also change over time?
Definitely yes - I experienced it myself. Since I started to be aware of my sexuality (that is when I was around 10/11 years old) I have had different fluctuations on the spectrum. There were periods when my bisexuality was 50:50, there was hetero time, and for a long time I have had a period of almost complete homosexuality. I wonder if there are any more shifts ahead of me.
You are an artist and you also have an account on Onlyfans. What role does creativity play in your life?
I am still a beginning artist and a graphic designer, but I have neglected my Onlyfans account recently - I do not like this platform, it feels worse there than it used to be on pornhub. As for creativity’s role, I am a very emotional person and I cannot imagine not letting it out - art seems to me the most natural solution. Thanks to it, I can also share my experiences and observations with others. For several years now, normalizing the transgender issues has been important to me, largely when it comes to sexuality. I believe that it is still a neglected topic, especially in Poland.
What might be the reason for the difficulty for parents when it comes to accepting their LGBTIQ* children in Poland? (80% of parents of LGBTIQ* youth in Poland do not accept their children who came out of the closet, statistics for years 2015-16)
Oh, that’s a difficult question. It seems to me that it is largely a lack of information and also disinformation - all fake news spread by radical Catholic organizations and disgusting statements by members of the ruling party and the president. Unfortunately, many of these parents are conservative people, often supporting PiS[the ruling party], and staunchly Catholic. I think that the Polish media lack reliable information about LGBT people and the visibility of queer people. Maybe if something has changed in this matter, some people's eyes would open and they would stop considering us a degeneration.
You are one of the two transgender men to appear nude in Replika's [the only LGBTIQ* magazine in Poland] calendar of LGBTIQ* men. Do you feel that you have moved the visibility of transgender people to the mainstream of the Polish LGBTIQ* community with this gesture?
I had a bit of such hope when I decided to participate in the calendar photo shoot, as did the editorial staff of Replika. Unfortunately, the mainstream didn't take any interest in nude pictures of trans guys. On the other hand, I heard many warm words from the Polish LGBT community about both the calendar and the interview for Replika. There were even messages from the people that my presence in Replika somehow helped them to broaden their awareness of the problems faced by trans people in Poland.
How do you recall the transition process? Which institutions would you rate positively / neutral / negatively? What do you think should change?
The process of transition in Poland is not the simplest one. However, this is accompanied by a lot of frustration - you have to prove your identity to someone and explain yourself at every step, and there are a lot of expenses too. Two weeks ago I had a hysterectomy (a surgery to remove the uterus). To me it is the end of a three-year transition process. I'm glad to have it behind me.
I believe, and in fact all trans people think that the process of changing data should not involve suing one's parents. I am also of the opinion that all of this (doctor visits, hormones, surgeries) should be much more affordable.
You are from the Z generation. Do you feel a difference in the approach to the psychosexual identity of people in Poland, depending on whether they are in their twenties, twenty-something, or older?
I would say yes, but I am aware that Gen(eration) Z is quite polarized in terms of worldviews. I admit that I function in the left-queer bubble, both in reality and in social media. Based on opinions from people with whom I’m friends with, I would think that my generation consists only of open-minded and accepting people - unfortunately, the truth is different. Anyway - I think the younger generations are a bit more tolerant than the older ones.
What does the LGBTIQ* community need the most in Poland right now in your opinion?
It would be useful for the people in power to change their approach to our community, and stop spreading hate speech and stop being silent when the violence escalates.
What are your dreams when it comes to Poland?
It is quite painful what I will say at this point, but leaving as soon as I finish my studies. Apart from that, I would like society and the government to change their attitude towards the LGBT community. So that, people who cannot or do not want to leave the country feel safe here and can live in 100% harmony with themselves.
Edmund Krempiński is a student of graphics at the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow. Born in Łódź where he returns very often as it is a constant source of his inspiration.
The main topic of his works is himself - he investigates his own sexuality, gender, and psyche. Art remains a dynamic and continuous tool for gaining self-knowledge for him. His sources of inspiration are sex, kitsch, and pop culture, in particular the music and aesthetics of Italo disco.
Interview by: Kuba Urbaniak is a helping hand for the campaign “I’m not an Ideology”. Trained as an architect and intermedia artist, he worked and studied in Poland, Iceland, and Vienna. Based in Poznań PL. Currently developing his skills and interest in social campaigns with ENOUGH is ENOUGH!