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JH Engström

The Frame

Pierre von Kleist, 2022

170x210 mm
hard cover, 358 pages

Since I began photographing 30 years ago, I have photographed men. Over the years, I have also photographed transgender people on several occasions. Self-portraits are another recurring motif of these 30 years. My own thousands of contact sheets reflect an ongoing search, both conscious and unconscious, for identity and the ever-changing and ephemeral nature of the human condition. In addition to these images, the book begins and ends with photographs of moraine rocks. These rocks were pushed forward by the ice sheet. When the ice melted 10,000 years ago, they stopped where they are today. The expanded self-portrait and the reflection in others is a way to address the historical renegotiation that is currently taking place regarding the idea of the male.

JH Engström

The Frame is JH Engström's expanded self-portrait, a search for and escape from the idea of the father, a meditation on the meaning of the male gender.

At a time when society is beginning to urgently re-examine the very notions of gender, this is Engström's personal, generous, sometimes violent and desperate, but always heartfelt contribution to this decisive discussion.

The book draws on Engström's extensive photographic archive and pairs these portraits with unchanging rocks from the Ice Age to remind us to always seek our own anima.

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