Mert & Marcus | LOVE Magazine #8 | 'Dance With A Stranger'

In a fantasy scene perhaps inspired by Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’, sensual experience and sexual ambiguity permeates the atmosphere of LOVE magazine’s issue #8. Jessica Brown Findlay, Laura Carmichael, Michelle Dockery, Joanne Froggatt, Rob James Collier, Sophie McShera, Amy Nuttall, Justus Eisfeld, Oliver Grenali, Konan Hanbury, Eddie Klint, Jason Morgan and Alex Shantzstar individually and together in Mert and Marcus’s editorial ‘Dance With A Stranger’. Katie Grand styles the sensuous fun and frolic in a wild romanticism. 

As for Shakespeare’s famous play, Douglas E. Green explored possible interpretations of the alternative sexuality that he finds within the text of the play:

in juxtaposition to the proscribed social mores of the culture at the time the play was written. He writes that his essay “does not (seek to) rewrite A Midsummer Night’s Dream as a gay play but rather explores some of its ‘homoerotic significations’ … moments of ‘queer’ disruption and eruption in this Shakespearean comedy”.[13] Green states that he does not consider Shakespeare to have been a “sexual radical”, but that the play represented a “topsy-turvy world” or “temporary holiday” that mediates or negotiates the “discontents of civilisation”, which while resolved neatly in the story’s conclusion, do not resolve so neatly in real life.[14] Green writes that the “sodomitical elements”, “homoeroticism”, “lesbianism”, and even “compulsory heterosexuality” in the story must be considered in the context of the “culture of early modern England” as a commentary on the “aesthetic rigidities of comic form and political ideologies of the prevailing order”. Aspects of ambiguous sexuality and gender conflict in the story are also addressed in essays by Shirley Garner[15] and William W.E. Slights[16] albeit all the characters are played by males.. via Wiki

One thing we do know is that gender fluidity is a favorite theme of Katie Grand. ~ Anne