As I grew up in a patriarchal and traditional village in the south of France, I had to follow specific codes and rules in order to become “a man”. I couldn’t embrace my identity freely… I had to hide most of the time as I was afraid of being sexually judged.

Chameleon is a photographic series about hiding and revealing. This duality becomes a metaphor of the little lizard that hides itself in plain sight. It is a narrative exploring masculinity and the spaces within a somewhat oppressive heteronormative structure. The images suggest love, hope and fear of these people who try to live beyond those norms. By using masks, fabrics, accessories and composing with colours, shapes and shadows, I question the performative / camouflage aspects of our lives.
My images are staged to create visual metaphors and specific statements which form part of global visual and political activism. I am equally engaged in celebrating as well as illustrating the diversity of masculinities.

This camouflage ability is an expression of how I seek to open up dialogue about those of us who live but do not fit the conventional moulds set by heteronormativity. The series is confronting our societies in a time when LGBTQI+ rights are under attack in many different places in the world. My work aims at encouraging queer people to show themselves and be proud of who they are.



Ugo Woatzi is a Photographer and Visual Artist based in Brussels. In 2012 he studied Sociology at Jean Jaurès University in Toulouse and Galatasaray University Istanbul with a focus on gender studies.
In 2016 he received his intermediate course certificate from the Market Photo Workshop in Johannesburg.
In 2019 he graduated with honors from the Master of photography at the LUCA School of Arts in Brussels. His work focuses on the bond between gender, body and space while celebrating and questioning the diversity of masculinity.
He creates his photographs through evocations of his own experience and people from his community. His aesthetics explores the use of colours, shapes and lights by creating staged images and visual metaphors.
Ugo is evolving as a queer artist. He exhibited at Bozar Brussels, Recyclart Brussels, Bkhz Johannesburg and his series “chameleon” was awarded the 2nd Prize (category Unique) of the Pride Photo Award 2019 in Amsterdam.