The Swedish photographer Theo Elias has won the latest edition of the Book Dummy Award, with his work Smoke.
This international award has been organised by La Fábrica and Photo London, with the collaboration of the printer Brizzolis and the British Journal of Photography, with the aim of selecting and publishing a major auteur photography book which stands for its quality, uniqueness and international scope.
As the photograph explains regarding the project: “In the summer of 2011, all my relationships with people closed to me were full of conflicts. I wanted to go away somewhere, to disappear. I had this idea that I could create myself a new identity elsewhere. I went away north, seeking the loneliness. I shared cigarettes with strangers in bars and during the bright summer nights. While meeting with others, I tried to find a meaning, a context. Photographing was a comfort; every time I pressed the shutter and every time I finished a roll of film, I felt time passing. It was liberating. The travels and the photography grew into an obsession.
Today, after many travels, years and shared cigarettes a story was formed. This project is a documentation of what no longer is, and maybe never was – The freedom in the north.”
Theo Elias (b.1985) is a photographer who lives between Stockholm and Gotheburg, Sweden. He holds a degree in Photojournalism from the Nordic School of Photography and is currently undertaking his MFA in Photography at Art Academy Valand. He has previously worked as an assistant for Anders Petersen.
Theo’s works deals with personal subjects such as as memory, truth and fiction. The Nordic landscape and its exploration is the foundation of his work. His practice is centered upon analogue photographic processes, in combination with other graphic processes and collages.
Last year he was shortlisted for the Kassel Dummy Award and the Nordic Dummy Award, and was also highlighted in many international photo journals, such as Fisheye Magazine, Photoworks and Fotoroom. He has recently participated in several exhibitions in Sweden and Europe.