By using an inside-out approach to record the lives of thirteen working girls from Kings Cross, Cruising provides a very immediate and visceral experience of their everyday realities, shocking truths and relentless dreaming.
King’s Cross is a…
King’s Cross is the biggest shithole, hellhole known to mankind.It’s not a good story, because every one that is here has some sort-of fucked up issue.
– Can I ask why you ran out of home?
Umm… because my stepdad was molesting me, and I really could not tell anybody because he told me I would be taken away by child services and it would happen to my little sisters – I didn’t know I wasn’t his kid. At the time, I thought he was my real dad, so I thought it would really happen.He actually use to have people come over and pay him to, you know fuck me as a kid – do you know what I mean?
What are you meant to do with a bag of cocaine?
Every girl out there has a story you couldn’t even imagine. Shelly proclaimed.
– Do you mind if I ask about yours?
No, I was molested by a family member – it was my brother.
– Did that turn you to drugs?
Nah not at all – I mean, I do a bit of coke here and there. I don’t even forgive him because he’s my brother, but like umm, I hate him with a passion, but I accept it happened, and you can’t move on unless you put it behind you.”
Further into the conversation while taking photos I asked Shelly if she was an addict and she promptly answered “No I’m not an addict, I’m not addicted to anything…” That all changed at the end of our paid time when she noticed me staring at her track marks around her wrist while I was preparing to take a photograph. Not to make my staring obvious, I drew attention to a poor quality tattoo that read ‘mum’ located amongst the track marks on her wrist.
– That’s a nice tat.
Yeah, and they’re tracks. Shelly confirmed with obvious discomfort. I shoot up coke, I mean… guys come in here with bags of coke, what are you meant to do?
The questionnaire and the sliced apple
What are you doing tonight? Sam, and I had made regular eye contact over the past couple of months while I was constantly walking the main strip of Kings Cross. This was the first time Sam had spoken to me.
– I’m doing a quiz, do you mind doing it? Just answer ten simple questions… Are our arses too fat for your photos? Sam replied.
Sam obliged and grabbed my book with the ten personality questions from me as we stood at the regular rendezvous point for working girls working for a brothel. I heard a voice over my shoulder call to me “Hey, can I do it too?” It was another working girl, Lexy.
– Yeah, it won’t take long.
What’s it for?
I explained to Lexy my project and the simplicity of the questions.
No one’s going to tell the truth, they can just lie – we’re all fucked up here. That’s the truth. What are the questions?
– Really simple, like what’s your favourite colour, favourite word…
That’s easy, mine’s ‘fuck off’!