How can roleplay and escapism help establishing and deepening the relationship between two people who have just met each other?
Through my photographs I investigate
alternative routes and rituals of becoming acquainted with a new person. Astrid
and I are from different cultures. Moreover, there is a generational gap
between us. Our only common interest is the magical world of fairy tales.
I’ve been researching hotels on the
internet for years now, which is how I discovered ‘Koningin van Pieterburen’
during my residency in Amsterdam. Pieterburen is a tiny village in the North of
the Netherlands, which has about 400 inhabitants. Located here is this small
Bed and Breakfast, a magical place which is run by its owner Astrid van Rose.
For 35 years, Astrid has been an artist/singer/entertainer
and also a kitsch-collector. Her unique hotel offers the perfect opportunity
for children to fully experience their childhood fantasies and for adults to
evoke their childhood memories. It was in March 2018 when I first visited Pieterburen
to meet Astrid. I started helping around the hotel, taking care of her dogs,
welcoming guests and fixing breakfast for them.
On our first day, Astrid and I unknowingly
created a custom: we dressed up as different characters and we spent more and
more time together around her hotel. As time passed, I gradually became part of
her quirky world. Our roles were constantly changing, she was either my mother,
my sister or my daughter.
In the first chapter of my series, I’ve been trying to find my own fictional character next to hers while capturing our everyday life together.