Joanna Piotrowska’s photos of family life are unsettling, awkward and, dare I say, incestuous. They pose ambivalent family scenarios clearly rooted in affection, but balancing on a strange flirtatious fringe. Are those siblings playing, or teenagers igniting an affectionate spark?
Piotrowska’s images are plausible contents of a family photo album, and if that was where they were presented they would not seem nearly as awkward. But that is one layer of intent, to view the quirks of family life through a filter that makes us consider what these scenarios should actually look like and evaluate those preconceptions. Piotrowska explains, “Many people have very strong preconceptions about how the world should look, they take things for granted without reflecting on them and questioning common views and beliefs. I think it’s really dangerous to have that attitude.”