Thomas Wågström‘s current solo exhibition “Point Zero”, at the Berlin based gallery Swedish Photography is an exploration of man’s quest for identity. Thomas Wågström’s series “Boxers”, in particualr, is a sensitive and even sensuous exploration of the desires and aspirations pronounced in the portraits. The photographer was not necessarily interested in boxing as a sport or in the choreography performed in the ring, but rather in the aesthetic representation of a solemn search for identity and manhood found at boxing clubs. These men, who spend hours cloistered in the isolated environment of the boxing club, see boxing as more than just a sport. For them it’s a way of life – one that brings structure into their everyday, providing stability and clarity.
Yet in spite of the presence of an almost palpable, ascetic masculinity, Wågström’s portraits do not come across as harsh or documentary; rather, they transmit a graceful gentleness. His oft-sombre pictures bear striking witness to the physical but also mental struggle, the fight with one’s own demons.
Swedish Photography presents images from five of Wågström‘s series, most of them from “Boxers” and “Slaget Noll/The Zero Moment”.
Until July 14, 2012.