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Johan Bävman ongoing project Swedish dads are up for view at Institute

Thu Jan 22 2015

No other country provides such generous terms of parental leave as Sweden. The current system allows parents to stay at home with their child during 480 days in total – while receiving an allowance from the State. Out of these 480 days, sixty must be taken by the father or else are lost. Legislation is underway to reserve another thirty days for paternity leave.

The purpose of this allocation is to improve gender equality. In order to promote a more equal sharing of parental leave between men and women, a so called equality bonus has also been introduced. The more days that are shared between parents, the higher the bonus. A couple may receive up to 1 500 euros in bonus.

In spite of the generous allowance and bonus – unique in their kind – only a fraction of Sweden’s dads use all their sixty days of parental leave. Even fewer parents choose to share the days equally between mother and father.

Johan Bävman’s ongoing photo project builds on portraits of dads on paternity leave that are among those few that have chosen to stay at home with their child for at least six months. With this project, Johan Bävman wants to find out why these dads have chosen to stay at home so much longer with their child than the majority of Swedish dads. What has this given them, how have their relations to partners as well as child changed, and what were their expectations before taking parental leave?

The purpose of the project is to describe the background to Sweden’s unique parental allowance, and to inspire other fathers in Sweden as well as in other countries to consider the positive benefits of such a system.

Elin Berge in Kamera&Bild

Mon Jan 12 2015

Kamera&Bild talks with Elin about her personal projects in an eight pages portrait in their latest issue.

Moment Agency group exhibition at Galleri Kontrast

Fri Jan 09 2015

Welcome to our group exhibition opening at Galleri Kontrast, Stockholm, January 10th between 12-16. We hope to see you there!

The Smell of Fire

Thu Jan 08 2015

By Eivind H. Natvig

Last night I spoke with my wife on the phone and she mentioned the smell of fire. A building next to where she was burned down a few days prior and she could not find peace of mind. Searching electrical outlets for short circuits and going through the place several times before going to bed.

Libya instantly came to mind. A memory-trigger so present that just the conversation sparked flashbacks of explosions and burned out buildings. On arrival in Egypt mid-march all my possessions would hint about the past. Even now, three years on, there is one box of memories I open. One box still containing a whiff of the anger towards Gaddafis reign. Fire.

Negatives covered in ashes. Half melted, almost torn to shreds.

I step over a carpet with Moammar Gaddafis face on it. One of his teeth have been painted black. Horns drawn on his forehead. Ten thousand men is praying in front of me.  I’m on a rooftop in Benghazi, Libya early March 2011.  Rain is pouring down, delivered with a fine Sahara dust it paints the world brown as it dries. In a basement nearby I uncovered some negatives a few days earlier. Negatives of unknown content and importance. I was but a photography nerd while going through a burned out cellar. A cellar of prison cells and now ashes. Broken glass, cracked tiles and vast amounts of ashes. Binders of documentation scattered across. The anger towards the regime is present everywhere. No thought of conservation, just destruction rooted in decades of fear. In the ashes on what used to be a floor I spot something familiar. A few large format frames. I pick them up. On the ground where I’m standing there are more, some medium format and 35mm. The film is so fragile, partly melted, the ashes is still warm. I collect the little I can find. My libyan companions find something of interest in a binder, but show no interest in my childish joy of discovering a treasure. For me all old photography holds interest. Little did I know about the significance of some of these frames.

It was not until I met Susan Glen more than a year later it became really interesting. She was already curating and researching historic material out of Libya and have put down countless hours, days and weeks conducting interviews. Mapping the content of these ash-covered frames of history.

Some of these images from the pre-Gaddafi era will be presented at Oslo Museum from January 29th 2015

NOTE **Since I found these images I have always been, and will always be, ready to return them to Libya as soon as I know they will be preserved for the future – please contact me with any and all questions**

Åsa Sjöström receives honorable mention in UNICEF Photo of the Year

Tue Dec 16 2014

For the second time Moment photographer Åsa Sjöström has been awarded an honorable mention at Unicef Photo of the Year Award 2014. This year for her work ”Borderland Children”.

Thousands of children grow up without their parents in the Moldovan countryside. Some villages have turned into ghost towns and children sing:

”At home in the valley where apple and quince grow a child picks peonies and waits, waits for someone to come home”

– I have been traveling to Moldova several times since I first arrived in 2005. In april 2014, I went back after eight years of absence. I saw an opportunity to come back to Moldova, when the world put its focus on the Ukraine crisis. Moldova was almost the same as eight years ago, only with tall buildings in Chisinau, but less people wandering the streets. The countryside was still breathtakingly beautiful but poorer than ever. The roads are wide but still without traffic. I aim to continue returning to Moldova to keep reporting on Europe’s poorest country, says Åsa Sjöström.


Signed and numbered Frida Hyvönen self-portrait for sale

Sat Dec 13 2014

I have had the pleasure of working together with the incredibly gifted and inspirational composer/singer Frida Hyvönen in several projects.

When I began my self-portrait project that I call Selves, she was one of the first I invited to visit my studio to portray herself, because I could trust that she would do something that would make the project grow. I adore this image that we made together. It makes me think of the theatrical performances in front of the camera, signed 1930’s artists like Claude Cahun or Leonor Fini.

I used this photograph as one of four examples when I searched for participants to Selves and I’m sure that it altered several. Just now, it’s included in the show VODA – Us and them, where I exhibit the first result of the project that I intend to keep working on for some time.

I liked this photograph so much that I thought it would be fussy to keep it all to myself. So me and Frida made an edition that is for sale. Send me and email at elin@momentagency if you are interested in purchasing your own.

“Frida Hyvönen self-portrait” by Elin Berge/Frida Hyvönen.
Signed: by us both
Technique: Giclée fine art print
Size: 18×24 cm
Edition: 16/16
Price: 400 €
Shipping: Sweden 7 € (1-3 days). Europe/rest of the world 16 € (4 days – 2 weeks)

- Elin Berge