Zed Nelson / The Family
I began this project 25 years ago. The wife of a friend was nine months pregnant, and I had an idea, based on time-lapse photography, to photograph them with their baby soon after the birth, and then every year, from then on, forever.
I planned the shoots in a formal, almost scientific way. Each year, on the same date, against the same backdrop, under the same lighting, I would photograph the same family. This way there are no distractions, only the miracle of growth and the changes of time and ageing.
Zed Nelson lives in London. His work has been published and exhibited worldwide.
Having gained recognition and major awards as a documentary photographer, Nelson has increasingly turned his focus on Western society, reflecting on contemporary social issues.
Gun Nation – a disturbing reflection on America’s deadly love affair with the gun – was Nelson’s seminal first book. The project has been awarded five major international photography prizes and is regarded by many as the definitive body of work on the subject.
Love Me – Nelson’s recently published second book – reflects on the cultural and commercial forces that drive a global obsession with youth and beauty. The project explores how an increasingly narrow Western beauty ideal is being exported around the world like a crude universal brand. The project spans five years, and involved photography in 18 countries across five continents. Love Me was nominated for the Deutsche Börse Photography Prize and awarded First Prize in the Pictures of the Year International awards.
A Portrait of Hackney – Nelson’s most recent book, is a reflection on the beauty and ugliness that co-exist in the area of London that Nelson grew up in, an area undergoing rapid gentrification and change.
Previous awards include the Visa d’Or, France; First Prize in World Press Photo Competition; and the Alfred Eisenstaedt Award, USA.
Nelson’s work has been exhibited at Tate Britain, the ICA and the National Portrait Gallery, and is in the permanent collection of the Victoria & Albert Museum.
Zed Nelson’s The Family will be exhibited as part of Photo East Festival in Ipswich from 24 May – 25 June 2016 at the Waterfront Gallery, UCS, Ipswich. More details can be found on the festival website.
To view the full series of The Family please visit www.zednelson.com