PRIVILEGED - Ann Inger Johansson

PRIVILEGED

priv·i·leged

priv(ə)lijd

adjective having special rights, advantages, or immunities.

As a career photojournalist, I have been photographing issues about immigration for decades. My intimate experience with this subject has allowed me to witness the hypocrisy of today’s immigration policies. It has also made me keenly aware that I too am an immigrant, a white immigrant. In this time of heightened scrutiny of immigrants from some parts of the world I am deeply troubled by what is happening and at the same time acutely aware of the advantages being a white immigrant has granted me. My project “Privileged” is a reaction to the disparities I recognize because of the color of my skin. In “Privileged” I juxtapose staged photographs of my white skin with images I have taken, while working as a photojournalist, that speak to different aspects of immigration. “Privileged” represents my personal experience as well as the current “sacredness” of white United States of America and the perceived ”invasion” by people who do not look liked the privileged group.

Note: the skin images have been partially re-touched to give a “pristine” fake reality leaving the hidden part of each image un-retouched.


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Juan Gonzalez, 12, left, pose for photographs with his mother Carmen as they speak with each other through the fence separating the U.S. and Mexico, in Calexico, Monday, March 21, 2005.

I have never been separated from my family by force.

Juan Gonzalez, 12, left, pose for photographs with his mother Carmen as they speak with each other through the fence separating the U.S. and Mexico, in Calexico, Monday, March 21, 2005.

I have never been separated from my family by force.