The way that Annaleen Louwes shoots her human subjects for her different projects, you would think they were all linked to the same theme. It is in their stare that looks straight at you and the angles their body language avoids turning towards you at all costs that almost leaves you feeling hollow inside, as if it was a personal offense. Minor Details is the combination of four different series that Louwes has created previously from 2002 – 2006. With the many different color and black and white photographs inside, there is so much to explore and figure out what can be compared between these studies of people and how their stories connect. However, it isn’t the stories that connect necessarily, but what you can start picking at from the surface that peels back the greater elements.
As each section of the book is looked at separately, a pattern begins to emerge for the different series shown. The first section, Ko Moreau, only shows one man for the thirteen photographs. As he changes positions, something changes about him. He switches from no shirt to wearing one as he sits and stands, only taking his shirt off when he sits. The next section, Den Dolder, are all photographs of the same size show either close-up face shots or full body shots of different people. Those who have their faces shown are intimately staring directly into the camera while those whose bodies are showing have hidden their gaze away in some fashion. The third section, Rob K., is one of the two smallest sections of the book, showing what appears to be a man getting dressed but with the photos not in order of how he would put on his clothes. The audience never gets a full view of what the man’s face looks like. The final part of the book, Jaap S., is another solo person section numbering the same as Rob K. and Ko Moreau. It shows different sections of a young male’s body fully clothed. He mostly looks down at his feet with the exception of one photo where he observes straight ahead of him. The breakdown of each series separately opens the way to building the bridge between the variations they hold.
Although very different, each series shares common bond within the particulars of the work. While they were not the same, the three sections of just men presented were showing the men getting dressed to a degree. Den Dolder did not show the same person twice, but the photos that were of the people lying on the bed were similar to those in Ko Moreau as well as their direct eye contact. Bodily injuries can be seen in Ko Moreau and Rob K. All the slight aspects begin to pile up into something greater and create a whole new story behind what was sequenced together in-between the binding. The projects were created in different years, but the feeling that Louwes planned to group these four projects together lingers in the back of your head. It is the little ways the subjects hold themselves in the photographs that show how they are feeling in that moment and what the viewer would have also missed if it was not captured for eternity.
Louwes focus on the smaller picture has been the driving force for the arresting end result. These are moments that are not memorable in a day, but when captured and put up next to similar insignificant parts of a day, they create a whole new thought of where the fleeting moments of your hour went. All those small details lost as an afterthought. Minor Details is an intricate study in what is underneath the face value of a portrait.
If you are interested in purchasing Minor Details, you can purchase it on the Photo-Eye website. Signed copies are available.
Written by Madison Rich
Pictures by Madison Rich