Sunflowers for Spring
Sunflowers for Spring refers to the first day of Spring. Springtime brings a sense of renewal and hope, yet for me it is forever intertwined with loss. It’s the day my father took his life in 2014. In 2021, sunflower seeds were distributed in mailboxes belonging to my father’s friends, leading to a bountiful growth of sunflowers throughout Summer. It was a small but significant reminder that even in the midst of pain and grief, beauty can still bloom.
As I immersed myself in capturing the sunflowers of my father’s friends and the world around me, I realized that the images I’ve been taking suddenly took on a new and deeper meaning. Through my lens, everyday beauty becomes entangled with the process of grief. My images capture the fleeting moments of gratitude and hope, serving as a reminder of the transformative power of love, time, and change. However, the missing pieces of the puzzle fell into place when I stumbled upon a collection of long-lost videocassettes that belonged to my father. In those precious recordings, I witnessed my younger self, completely engrossed in the act of painting sunflowers.
Within this project, a captivating series unfolds around my younger sister. Starting in 2017, I have been photographing her with an intuitive and authentic approach, documenting her evolution from a girl into a young woman. These portraits not only capture the visual changes that occur over time but also carry a deeper message about the significance of time and the inevitability nature of change. Each photograph reflects a unique connection and profound affection between us, surpassing the mere subjects of the images. As I continue to capture these precious moments, the series almost becomes a collection of self-portraits, portraying not only my sister’s growth but also my own personal development as her photographer and sister.
‘Sunflowers for Spring’ is a reflection on the taboo around mental suffering.
By openly discussing difficult topics and dedicating time to them, we create opportunities for growth and healing – not just for ourselves, but also for those around us.