The new photographic series “Smoking Kids” by conceptual photographer Frieke Janssens is unsettling, disturbing, provocative & unquestionably compelling. She photographed children aged between four and nine, theatrically clothing them to mimic their “glamour” stereotypes – all of which are associated with smoking. From the vintage cinema dame, to the worn out housewife through to the tough guy having a big drag on a fat cigar – all portrayed & captured in melancholy detail.
"A YouTube video of a two-year-old Indonesian nicotine toddler inspired me to create this series, “Smoking Kids”. The video highlighted the cultural differences between the east and west, and questioned notions of smoking being a mainly adult activity. Adult smokers are the societal norm, so I wanted to isolate the viewer’s focus upon the issue of smoking itself. I felt that children smoking would have a surreal impact upon the viewer and compel them to truly see the acts of smoking rather than making assumptions about the person doing the act. To assure you of the safety of the children, there were no real cigarettes on set. Instead, chalk and sticks of cheese were the prop stand ins, while candles and incense provided the wisps of smoke."
Behind The Scenes Video
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