18 September 2008

Invited Guest: Thomas Wågström

Wågströms photographs are a personal reflection on conditions such as vulnerability, obsession and fear and have a narrative character, combining an artistic expression with a documentary story. His photographic projects have been exhibited in various forms such as books, exhibitions and stills for Swedish television. Who are you, who am I? Shall I take care of my brother? Those are the words of the Swedish poet Marie Lundquist, quoted from Wågströms book ”The Inner Side of Earnest” (1994). For two years he followed a unit from the Swedish Special Forces during their education and was amazed by the almost ritual form of gravity in which they tackled their difficult trials.

In the book ”Boxers” (2000), Wågström continued to investigate the question of male identity. His photographs of boxers describe the conditions of contemplation and an inner struggle, rather than the real fight that takes place in the boxing ring. He is interested in the introspective expression, a sort of state of emergency of the soul, which he considers as the essence of boxing.

His latest book published in 2006 is titled ”The Zero Moment”. There is by way of explanation at the end of the book a paragraph quoted from the book by Italo Calvino ”If on a winter´s night”. The first line reads, ”I would like to erase the consequences of certain events and restore an initial condition.” This sets the mood for the images which have a dream like sequence, a borderland between wake and sleep where different kinds of fears and mental obsessions become visible.

Please find out more on his website
Invited by Mikael Jansson

fragile futures