Trouvailles (5) Vanessa Winship ‘Sweet Nothings’

Today I had a day off and I decided to visit the ‘Kunsthal’ in Rotterdam. It featured an exhibition called: ‘Edward Hopper and His Time.’ Hopper represents American Modernism but never really belonged to one of the groups of modernism. The exhibition shows eight works of Hopper and I was struck by the tranquility in his paintings. Almost photographic, frozen in time. Alongside the works of Hopper other ‘Modernists’ are shown. The ‘regionalists’ who pictured people in rural areas. The Ashcan school with their urban paintings, cubists and abstractionists. But I liked the works in the ‘Machine Age’ section the most. What you see is what you get. Still impressed and inspired by this exhibition I decided to go up and see the the photographic work of Jacob Holdt and Vanessa Winship. Holdt made hundreds of photos during his travels through the United States from 1970-1975. An unconformistic view on America in the early seventies. From rich to poor and from black to white. A bit tired of all the impressions I considered leaving, but for one reason or the other my feet went left to Vanessa’s Winship wing. And my feet were right!

I was struck by the portraits of girls in East-Turkey. The Kunsthal website states: “Winship chooses to portray the children in the exact same way every single time: frontally and at full-length. Moreover, each frame is made at the same distance. Due to this all the girls become similar each other. Clothing and pose further attribute to a sense of congeniality. All girls wear dark blue school uniforms with small white lace collars and refined embroidery, as is obligatory in all state schools in Turkey.”

If you take a close look at the pictures you see the individuality and the awaking puberty. Each girl is portrayed the same, but all girls are very different. The photos excited me and made me emotional. Maybe because I have two daughters, maybe because of the innocence and purity. I am still impressed. Bought here booklet and watched the photo’s over and over again. Go see this! Until 17 January 2010. Or visit her website:

I made this photo of my favorite picture with my iPhone: