Casper Dalhoff ‘Normal’

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Anxiety and powerlessness have been as faithful companions as the camera when photojournalist Casper Dalhoff has visited Sølund to capture life in the white barracks at Denmark’s largest home for people with extensive physical and mental disabilities. At first the feelings of Anxiety and powerlessness provoked him. Because why were they there? And why did they stay in him long after he packed up the camera and got in the car? Later they became his engine. Because with the anxiety and helplessness came the need to portray the psychotic, the autistic, the self-harming and people with Down’s syndrome, who live their entire adult lives at Sølund. Zooming in and giving others the opportunity to access a world that only the developmentally disabled themselves know. Do away with the fear of touch and force people to face their fear of it differently.

What started as the final project at Denmark’s Media and Journalism College in 1998 became a life project, and in 2003 Casper Dalhoff received the first prize in the Daily Life category at World Press Photo for the melancholic black and white images of Sølund’s dark and strange destinies, as he himself describes them. The project continued, and today, 25 years later, Casper Dalhoff’s pictures have developed into a unique piece of Danish history that takes us close to an everyday life that only a few have access to and know how to convey. As the jury at Pictures of the Year int. reasoned in 2016 when they awarded the collection one of the competition’s main prizes, the ‘Community Awareness Award’: “It is photographed with so much love and empathy that you think the photographer is related to them all”

Specifications:   Book Lab ・ 2024 ・ Hardcover ・ 22 x 30 cm. / 212 pages ・ English / Danish ・ 9788794091275
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