In the beginning there was the story, 2017
Much can be said about stories. They’ve been dismissed, praised, criticized. You might think they can be silenced. You might go to infinite lengths to prove that they are useless, that there is no room for fairy tales in our very sensible society. If you’re good enough, the world might even go silent for a moment. And then, as you start grinning with delight, you’ll hear them murmuring in every corner, the sounds getting louder and louder until they erupt again. The world is made by stories and stories are made by people. They will always surface. As myths about gods and lost worlds. As fairy tales about princesses who aren’t listening. As memories told around the dinner table. As thoughts. Quietly, stories creep up in our lives, they surround us, we make them up but they also make us who we are.
The project looks at contemporary girls and young women, in their natural environment, trying to understand how much the beliefs we find in fairytales concerning women reflect in nowadays society.
People have much complained that fairy tales impose unrealistic and unhealthy ideals for young girls. But is this the stories fault? Why do we remember the beauty of Rapunzel although it was not her beauty but her singing that made the prince fall in love with her? Prince who, mind you, ends up blind but keeps loving Rapunzel all the same. Why is the story of Snow-White so popular but not that of The Peasant’s Wise Daughter, who saves herself and her father repeatedly? The fairytales world is wide and complex, and the stories that keep being remembered over time are the ones that we feel are closest to us.
The book that resulted from this projects consists of personal staged photographs and fragments of text about women taken from different European fairy tales and invites the viewer to meditate over how much those beliefs we might find outrageous in fairy tales exist, in fact, in our real world.