Catherine Opie 
Melissa & Lake, 
Durham North Carolina (from the Domestic series), 
1998. Chromogenic print
In 1998, Opie traveled cross-country in her motor home for two months in order to photograph lesbian couples. This series, called Domestic—of which Melissa & Lake, Durham, North Carolina is an example—presents these couples involved in everyday, household activities: relaxing in their backyard, hanging out in their kitchen, playing with their children. There is no sensationalism here. Much like the formal studio portraits before them, these intimate photographs speak both to Opie’s identification with her subjects and to the overwhelming absence of such images in mainstream representations.

Catherine Opie 

Melissa & Lake,

Durham North Carolina (from the Domestic series),

1998. Chromogenic print

In 1998, Opie traveled cross-country in her motor home for two months in order to photograph lesbian couples. This series, called Domestic—of which Melissa & Lake, Durham, North Carolina is an example—presents these couples involved in everyday, household activities: relaxing in their backyard, hanging out in their kitchen, playing with their children. There is no sensationalism here. Much like the formal studio portraits before them, these intimate photographs speak both to Opie’s identification with her subjects and to the overwhelming absence of such images in mainstream representations.