On 1 April 2015, Laura Hospes found herself in the UCP, a psychiatric ward of the hospital, after a suicide attempt. From the very first day she kept a visual record of herself with her camera, because talking was simply too difficult.
With her monochrome, high contrast photos she shared her story with the world around her, which helped her to feel less lonely. The period, that lasted over eight months, resulted in an extended series about a young woman teetering on the brink of a conscious death.
Laura decided to make a book of the series, to let the world see and more importantly feel her story. And so the book UCP was created, 1.5 years after this first suicide attempt.
This book is chosen as one of the Best Dutch Book Designs 2016 and displayed at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.
Author(s): Laura Hospes
Size: 190 x 240 mm
Design: Laura Hospes
After looking at hundreds and hundreds of portfolios very carefully, I am reminded of the sheer difficulty of creating photographs that are truly unique and stand out from the pack. In this age of increasing utter narcissism seen in the millennial generation, assisted and created by technology, there’s a mind-numbing amount of self portraiture. It actually frightens me that there are so many people so thoroughly interested in themselves and that they actually think that other people really care — and maybe they do, but just for a minute. However, the brave work by Laura Hospes is a very unique set of self portraits where vanity is the farthest thing from her mind. She is using photography in a way that touches me, making very classic physiologically charged images that actually have a purpose. She states that “My camera is my consolation and listens to me better that anyone else. I want to share the difficulties and loneliness that I feel right now.” I have used my camera, pointed at the landscape for the same purpose too, so I get it, and I think we should listen to her too.
—Todd Hido, Artist, San Francisco, CA (via LensCulture)