Rineke Dijkstra, Kolobrzeg, Poland, July 23 1992, 1992
From the Tate Gallery:
This is a large-format colour photograph of a boy standing on a beach. He stares intensely towards the camera, narrowing his eyes against the bright midday sun. His tousled black hair and the damp sand on his feet suggest that he has recently been in the sea. He holds his arms to his sides, his fingers touching his upper thighs. The boyish narrowness of his chest contrasts awkwardly with his broadening hips, which are clad in close-fitting red swimming trunks. A smattering of acne on his nose and chin confirms the onset of adolescence. The image is formally composed. Dijkstra used flash in combination with natural light and a narrow depth of field, placing only the foreground and subject in focus, with the result that he appears artificially illuminated. Framed full-length in the centre of the picture, he stands out against a backdrop made of bands of colour. Strong horizontals are provided by the edge of the sand, the breakers in the water and the line where sea meets deep blue sky. These are all below the boy’s waist, throwing into relief his slightly bandy legs and adding to the sense of gawky physical vulnerability.
I saw the retrospective of Dijkstra last summer and it was amazing!!!