Product detail

Smoking Kids

Smoking Kids

Author: Frieke Janssens
$42.95(AUD)  inc GST

Two years ago, Belgian photographer Frieke Janssens came across a YouTube video of a two year old Indonesian child chain smoking, totalling, on average, two packs a day. Recognising the many socio-cultural differences between the East and the West, the artist's plan to confront the Western viewer with such conflicting, surreal images grew and she departed on her new artistic mission. Smoking Kids is the title of Frieke Janssens' somewhat controversial photographic project. Fifteen children aged between four and nine pose in a startling adult way in front of the camera, each smoking a cigarette, cigar or pipe. Looking like they have stepped right out of a 1960's TV show adds a modestly theatrical, retro quality but also something whimsical and unreal to the images. The effect of these photos on the viewer has proven to be both overwhelming and diverse. Since their inauguration at the artist's representing Gallery Ingrid Deuss, Belgium, in 2011, the art world quickly responded with fascination and admiration for this bold series of photographs which resulted in consecutive exhibitions in Belgium, Russia and the USA. Simultaneously, the images travelled the Internet, appearing and reappearing on various blogs and forums where comments of disbelief and concern ruled the day. Unaware of the skilful Photo-shop tricks applied to the photos, once again, people convicted this contemporary art to be shocking and manipulative, now even dragging children down the abyss of its sensation-focused ambitions. But, Janssens' photographs are really not that. Instead, they manage to hold an almost perfect balance between something that we consider to be ugly and wrong (the habit of smoking and children who have developed that habit) and an aesthetically pleasing image. Although many will condemn and frown upon the pictured action, Janssens' Smoking Kids is likeable, clever and thought-provoking, like all good art should be. The visual impact of a photograph can be potentially so intriguing that it has the capability of challenging our personal and shared critical opinion. Not intended to be a book to file away on your bookshelves, each of the photographs can be removed. Tear them out, send them to someone, or hang them on your wall, just make sure they are seen!

Stock Information

General Fields

  • : 9789460581113
  • : LUSTER
  • : LUSTER
  • : January 2013
  • : 190mm X 215mm
  • : February 2013
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Frieke Janssens
  • : Postcard book or pack
  • : 38