- PhMuseum 2023 Photography Grant
Now I know how to tell you, goodbye.
Dates2020 - 2022
- Location Hellevoetsluis
This is a project about leaving home, through exploring my environment and it's people I found a way to say goodbye to my family, my town and my youth. This project takes shape as a photographic goodbye letter.
In a period of time where the world, and life as we know it, is shaking on its foundations, the future is starting to look more and more fragile. At this time my personal foundations were also on loose footing. Coming from a Polish mother and a Dutch father I grew up in a medium size town a stone's throw away from the countryside of the southwest of The Netherlands. In the first two decades of my life I was preoccupied with becoming financially independent in preparation of starting a life of my own.
When the time arrived to move out I had a feeling something was still missing. I was just barely familiar with the people and landscapes surrounding my hometown. I needed some sort of closure, a way to remember where I came from, a connection, a mental and emotional point of return. In an effort to slow down the process of leaving my youth behind me I decided to explore this landscape and its people with my camera.
Everyday for a period of two years I set out to go and explore, but what was I actually looking for? I quickly found out that the romantic idea I had of this landscape was not very accurate. In this desolate rural landscape I predominantly encountered male farmers without family, struggling mentally, a sense of faded glory. This raised a lot of questions. What was happening in this desolate and cold place behind my family home? Through mysterious and thrilling encounters I learned how estranged we were, the "Polder" and me.
This is the process that I photographed for over two years. My experience of connecting to a landscape, people and a place I had grown up a stone's throw away from but never really knew. I experienced what the Dutch countryside looked and felt like, now I know how to tell you, goodbye.