The sheets in the book are divided, with the outside part telling the story of Gualbert and his family through documents and images, while inside comprises images made by Ben Krewinkel of an undocumented person.
21 cm x 29,7 cm, 80 pages
French folded, open size 71 cm x 54,5 cm
folded to 43 cm x 29,7 cm, printed 4/1 CMYK/black
Book wrapper: printed onto Profibulk 150 g/m2 printed 1/1 black
Inside: 80 pages
bound to 40 pages inside and 40 pages outside onto Profibulk 150 g/m2
French / Japanese binding, softcover with dustjacket, saddle stitched
Images supplied as digital files, image corrections, colour corrections and image retouches.
1 run on digital proofs
"Is it possible to document the life of an undocumented person who has lived illegally in the Netherlands since 2001, including all inherent fears and uncertainties, without creating a manifesto that links its authors to certain political views? Since my co-author is the very same person as the main character in this story, guessing the true nature of this publication and answering the question should not prove to be too difficult. As one might guess, Gualbert is not the real name of this story’s protagonist. Therefore, reading this exhibition catalogue as a non-fictional and objective story purely, might be considered naive. Initially, I had not aimed to tell just another story about illegal immigrants. By using a collaborative approach, I tried to refrain from objectifying my subject, Nigerian Gualbert. I wanted to tell a more personal story, in which my role as the intruding and biased documentary photographer would leave sufficient room for interpretation. In order to achieve this, I decided to step back from the sheer documentary mode of telling a visual story by adding a collection of personal photographs, letters, fragments of conversations and official documents. This catalogue tends to function as a descriptive and conceptual composition of a range of different materials. It tells the multi-layered story of a possible life. A life which is partly fictitious, but at the same time a life Gualbert and his family had undeniably hoped for and which, under different circumstances, could have been feasible. During the many conversations we had, Gualbert entrusted me with his life story. It proved to be rather dispersed, or even twisted, at times. There are quite some misty clouds surrounding his narrative. These inconsistencies however form an inextricable part of the project. Gaulbert has always had a strong say in what he did and did not want to share, and how exactly this should be processed. In this book, I have tried to paint a complete picture of his life. The result of which has turned out to be quite different from what a mere collection of documentary photographs would have suggested."