The artist Zoe Leonard and film-maker Cheryl Dunye collaborated to produce a project about a fictional American-African movie star called Fae Richards of the early 20th century and create an album of photographs charting her life and history from childhood at the turn of the 20th century through her glamorous carrier as a Hollywood movie star to her involvement with the civil-rights movement of the 50’s in to her old age.
The purpose was to question the truth of achievement and how history is recorded. To ask, who gets included in written histories and why? Who is left out and why? Who is in control of the information?
This is a cleaver project and required actors, carefully chosen costumes props and locations as well as authentic looking photography.
Rineke Dijksta has explored an interesting idea of portraiture by photographing young people as when the began their National Service in the Israeli armed services and re-photographed them about a year later when they have returned to civilian life. The purpose is to explore how experiences and environments change us and how this is reflected in the way we look. Interestingly, Dijksta noticed that her subjects often looked younger when they came out of the service than when they started. This I find fascinating.
I notice that Maria Kapajeva has also explored this form of portraiture in her project ‘One Month’ http://www.mariakapajeva.com/one-month/ when she photographed her fellow travellers to India taking their portraits on their first day and again on their last and juxtaposing the two images to compare how the individual had altered after their stay.