i first encountered the photos of james mollison when i saw a copy of his book the disciples at some bookstore somewhere (sorry, the vagueness of the environment is the result of my encounters with books).
his series of photographs have kept me coming back not only because of their beauty but because his politics are apparent and obvious but also classily intertwined with the subject matter.
his latest book, where children sleep, is another collection of portraits with significance. the stunning content comes from the pairing of each child portrayed with his or her bedroom – or to put it more honestly, sleeping space. mollison has included children from around the globe, from different socio-economical backgrounds to show the variety of personal space in our world.
four-year-old kaya lives in an apartment in tokyo, japan.
what could have been a patronizing collection of presenting us with yet another set of the appalling conditions the poor of the world live in, is now a set of every imaginable angle into the habitats of children everywhere.
it is astonishing how certain spaces are familiar enough to only create a brief interest in the content of the photos while others had me peering closely to distinguish where the space for the child actually was.
seventeen-year-old, 'x' lives in a favela in rio de janeiro, brazil.
what makes the book great, in my opinion, is not that it is a work aesthetically fit for a coffee table, but that is was actually combined with children as preferred readers in mind. the texts are simple enough for a child to understand providing tools to grasp the differences in the situations their peers find themselves.
fourteen-year-old rhiannon lives in darvel, scotland.
the book fulfills two tasks in one: first, an accomplished pictorial proof for adults and, secondly, a lesson in global inequality for kids, using a subject matter they relate to and understand, other children.