You’re looking at a photograph. It’s a donkey sitting on a chair. No, it’s a person, wearing a donkey costume, sitting on a chair. Or is it? Then you flip a page and see another photo. This time you’re sure it’s a person dressed in a suit covered in pine cones. I’m sure all sorts of imaginations are blooming in your mind by now, but let’s clear this one out first.
Anne-Sophie Stolz. For some of you, this name might be the enlightenment your were looking for while paging through the colorful and sometimes demonic costume photos. But for some of you who are not familiar with this name, here’s a short who, what, where, when and why for you.
No, these photographs have nothing to do with the circus and the people in the photographs are not circus performers.
Stolz grew up in Swabian Bavaria (Schwaben, in German). In this series of photographs, she returned to her roots in order to capture the customs and rituals that still take place there, including the Swabian-Alemannic Fastnacht. This festival still contains artifacts of older times, such as villagers dressing up in masks and costumes. They then paraded through the streets of the villages, hoping to shoo away winter’s gloom.
Sorry to disappoint those of you who thought this article was about the circus. If you want some circus fun, pay a visit to Cologne, Germany around September 18 to 23, 2012. That’s right, it’s the photokina 2012 fair! But what’s the fair got to do with the Swabian-Alemannic Fastnacht? Visit the Lomography booth and we’ll show you! We will have plenty of things for your eyes to marvel at. Just step right up!