‘The Company You Keep’ was a deeply personal project driven by my self-evaluation of my peers and those whose company I keep. The idea for TCYK stemmed from Queer theory and the concept of chosen family and how it's an integral part of every queer person's life. To most the family we’re given at birth is enough, but in a large number of cases for queer people, we see disapproval of our lifestyle from those same ‘nearest and dearest’ that surround us.
Chosen families are something I've always admired as it's your similarities and struggles which bring you together and it turns into a relationship that you can rely on for that mutual experience and support with zero judgment. Through TCYK I wanted to create a safe space for queer people who weren’t as fortunate to receive a supportive family from birth. due to the fluidity of safe spaces I choose to centre around a dinner party as I wanted the rich conversations and the warmth of all your favourite people being together in one place without the formalities of a traditional family structure
Due to the realities of covid I couldn’t host an actual dinner party so adapted my initial concept to match, in doing so opening up the project to a wider queer audience. The assets form to make an advertising campaign and dinner set marketed at queer audiences in the hopes of inciting spontaneous events. Much like the fine china one reserves for special occasions, I wanted the set comprised of plates invitations and menus, to become synonymous with those moments you hold onto and cherish.