Anna Clarén: Holding

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This work might be regarded as a diary documenting my life during a period when I took pictures 24/7, even in the night I let the shutter be wide open, exposing while I was asleep. The people in the pictures are persons that are close to me; parents, my sister, my closest friends, my self and also some people I only met by accident on the street.

“Holding” is a term derived from psychiatry, which means that each and every child should be entitled to a loving and caring environment by her or his parents. This child will enter life with the feeling of being held. Held by her parents, her self and by life itself. The one child that for any reason grows up in a family where this love is not possible, will, as an adult, constantly find herself in an endless, desperate search for holding. And in some cases will experience a feeling of falling.

The search for somewhere to hold on to will express itself in various ways; symbiotic love affairs, destructiveness, escaping, a constant feeling of alienation, of being outside.

The book’s story is, in many ways, a self portrait, but deep down inside, human beings are very alike. In our searching, the questions, confusions, we may find a universal strand of humanity; the difference between us lies often in the answers. And therefore, this work is a self portrait with universally human questions/stories. /

/ Anna Clarén

63 color images • Editor: Gösta Flemming • Layout: Anna Clarén • Design: Ola Carlson • Hardcover • 250 x 270 mm • 128 pages • Swedish/English • 2006 

Winner of the Swedish Photobook Award/Best Photobook 2006.

Included in Parr/Badger’s The Photobook: A History volume III.

Selected for Hasselblad Center’s exhibition Published – Photo Books in Sweden, Gothenburg Museum of Art 2018.