Portrait of an Artist as an Old Man (2016-2018)
Keywords:Storytelling, Documentary Photography, Documentary Artwork, Environmental Portrait, Dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, Memory Loss, Art & Aging, Artist, Photography & Life Writing, Life Portrait, Life Story, Visual Portrait, ArtDoc
In Portrait of an Artist as an Old Man Mirja Maria Thiel tells the life of Fritz Dressler (1937-2020), a former professional photographer and university professor, who suffered from Alzheimer’s the last years of his life. Photographed over the course of more than two years, the black and white series is completely committed to the emotional reality of the charismatic protagonist. Dressler found immense pleasure and pride in himself by falling back on taking pictures himself. Adding some of his longing color images of his immediate surroundings, above all landscape and cloud images, as well as quotes by him gives the affected protagonist a voice and transforms this series into some kind of collaborative narrative which it has been in so many ways. The work intends to inspire a compassionate dialogue in society about issues concerning more respect, participation and empowerment towards people affected with Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Copyright (c) 2022 Mirja Maria Thiel
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