Pediatrician,  Anesthesiologist and Photographer Anna Hartman-Ksycinska is the Edge of Humanity Magazine contributor of this documentary photography.  From the project  ‘Identity is a secondary thing’.  To see Anna’s body of work, click on any image.

 

 

Identity is a secondary thing.

And then there is this crucial, terrifying moment, which is not even a moment, but more of a process, when you start to realize that your share of innocence is soon to be gone. And now, this is the world that looks at you. You need to create yourself from scratch” – wrote Julia, 19 years old.

 

 

 

“Identity is a secondary thing” is a documentary project about young people from Rzeszow, the town in the south-eastern part of Poland. I had been accompanying this group for 2 years. It was not easy for me to be accepted, but, step by step, I gained their trust. As young people do, they spent time together talking, seeking inspirations, experimenting with their external appearance and sexual preferences. Sometimes, they were full of joy. Sometimes, under the superficial colors and bravado, I could find deep layers of vulnerability, fears, loneliness and suffering of lack of acceptance and support. They tried to compensate these feelings creating strong bonds inside the group, which gave them the opportunity to innocent hug, but also to look for first sexual relations, not necessarily heterosexual.

 

 

 

After several months they gave me the permission to portrait them. It was not an easy task. In the conservative town these young people clearly were crossing social boundaries, either in teacher’s or parent’s eyes.

How much freedom do young people have? Do we try to make their step into adulthood easier? Does an identity have to be the subject of political discussion? I ask these questions every day.

Julia- she is my daughter.

 

 

All images and test © Anna Hartman-Ksycinska

 

 

 See also:

We are real, we are important

By Anna Hartman-Ksycinska

 

 

 

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