Matjaž Tančič

Publisher: Jiazazhi Press

Slight scratchmarks on box

I was born in Yugoslavia, a formerly communist country that no longer exists. The first time I ever traveled abroad by myself was to Cuba, and after that I traveled around Russia. I’ve now lived in China for the last couple of years and my most recent photo project was shot in North Korea. Most people know these countries almost entirely as cliches. We only picture the people there as those on the wrong end of the rifle in Hollywood movies, or through short distillations of suffering and aggression in the back of newspapers. The further away the country is, in terms of both geography and culture, the greater the mistrust and misunderstanding of its people. The media’s focus on the misdeeds and atrocities committed by North Korea’s also ends up entirely obscuring the actual people who live there, until the only North Koreans we see in the newspapers are identical marching soldiers. When I was invited to do a photographic project in North Korea by the Koryo Studio, which works on cultural exchanges, I knew I didn’t want to tell the same story you see on every television channel.

Portrayals of North Korea tend to veer into extremes: either sensationalistic demonization on one side, or ungrounded idealization and staging on the other. Both portrayals erase the actual human beings who live there. Instead of this, I wanted to build a project focusing on the group that forms the core of every society - people. People of different ages, statuses and occupations that anyone, anywhere could identify with. It seemed simple, but it quickly became clear why there aren’t many similar projects around.

— from the artist’s website/description


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Case Size
195 x 155 x 65 mm
with 3D glasses, 64 pieces of 3D cards, 5 pieces of 3D postcards and introduction booklet
Publication Date
Chinese, English
First Edition

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