Klara Källström, Blackdrop Island

On my bookshelf lies an inconspicuous book. It quietly displays an underexposed purple front cover with a square image made up of a saturated black. In here lies a series called Blackdrop Island. A series made up of square colour images with a wide perspective. Källström uses flash to a distanced effect, standing outside the scene looking in. The light never stops until it hits the intended subject, an object, a tree a couple. On first viewing of the book you get the sensation of a relationship with a couple taking pictures and her perspective as the photographer suggesting intervention. There is a recognisable distance throughout, alerted by the wider angle taken and the lonesome flash. The pictures reveal subtle suggestions. Beautiful suggestions. Lines meet up covering vast distances using pairings to compliment the scene Klara has seen in front of her. It is a lonesome trip.

Cones stand tall; women stand but avoid the lens of the photographer but looking at another; a gentle voyeurism. The images seem to be looking for something, and come close to finding it, although I cannot tell you what. She gently scouts around, coming across empty scenes, people at work and general daily life. A photograph of a woman in her lounge, looking happily at her camera, they reveal a relationship, but the more you see the location and the nationality of the photographer the perspectives do not add up. To be thrown into such an intimate space and then venture outside on what seems an aimless wander makes you wonder the amount of people involved in the photographing process. Who is she with?

The series progressed into more intimate scenarios suggesting the walk has begun. We see the same woman appear again before us, this time situated in a friendly atmosphere, comfortable. As the eye darts a concise memory is taken, logically placed within the pages. The images cold but playful, distant yet close. It is like a tour of Japan between friends or lovers. Blackdrop Island reveals a state of mind, to situate on an island between two people but could deal with location. Blackdrop is the natural backdrop the situations and people find themselves in. Revelling in a deep pool of black, as if it is the only thing existing in the world. There is a sense of a false narrative, a false documentation, edited in such a way we fill in the blanks and create a misconception. What is undeniable is the beauty it holds, not only as a series but also as a book. Its deeply saturated paper streams us into the pages as we revisit the pictures, dissecting and understanding the narrative.

Text plays a helping hand by poet Viktor Johansson, strange stories only understandable by personal characters; intimate messages, not in the form of communication but in a form of expression. Metaphoric notions make up Viktor’s participation, separate yet they have a close relation to the images. Two minds working, like the human relationship. This creates a loose gelling between words and image, which creates a complete story that when explored, we have a sense of what we’ve seen and understood but we have enjoyed each second as we have passed through.