By Jack Williams
This abstract photography series looks to get up close and personal with the nude bodies of a unique set of models: people who have lived to be 100.
Whether it be wrinkled elbows, hands that could tell 1000 stories or the eyes that had seen them, no body part was off limit for photographer Anastasia Pottinger and her series, “100: What Time Creates.”
The series came to Anastasia, 47, through a chance shoot in 2009, when a 101-year-old woman volunteered to be shot nude as long as she was not identifiable.
Anastasia – and the subject herself – was extremely pleased with how the images turned out, and having exhibited the works, the photographer made it her mission to photograph other centenarians in the same way.
Anastasia, from Columbia, Missouri, said: “When I began, it was just an exercise in light and texture, abstract images of bodies, much like my favorite newborn photography that I had been producing.
“Soon, though, it became more about honouring my models and their stories, their beauty.
“I wanted to show their beauty, the inherent beauty in aging, that is so often overlooked.
“I wanted to give them respect and a visibility they had not known before.”
Initially, the photographer sourced contacts for centenarians through people she know, beit it friends of friends or family.
Eventually, though, her journey would take Anastasia to the likes of Kansas, Los Angeles and San Diego, resulting in a book of her finest works, which was recently released.
If that title, named after the series, proves popular, Anastasia said, she will continue her travels to add to the collection going forward – hopefully adding more elderly people from different cultures.
The photographer, who has shot 15 centenarians in total, said: “I have heard from people around the globe who have been touched by the images.
“They are moved in some way – perhaps it reminds them of their own mom, dad or grandparent that they have cared for, or it might cause them to think about their own aging and mortality.
“I am also challenging the idea of what is beautiful.
“If I can help increase awareness of the beauty of the aged in our world, I will have succeeded.”