In a quest for the ultimate meaning of self, Dutch photographer Hans Hiltermann portrays the essence of the human condition through a prolific body of work.
In a shadow free environment, models are viewed completely unadorned, creating a deep level of fascination. The sheer scale and unwavering gaze can also be said to unsettle the viewer as they in turn become the subject.
Viewers look straight into the eyes of the beholder, provoking a connection or perhaps a judgement and often self reflection.
We can sit behind our façade of make up, jewellery, or a certain presented disposition, but with Hiltermann’s subjects their eyes, gaze, well worn wrinkles and fine lines are laid bare and open for all to see.
Experiencing a plethora of images you are unable to escape your own thoughts; who is this person, where did they come from, what do they value and why is he/she looking at me like that.
Hiltermann says of his work, “YOU is about my fascination for life. For who we are and how we inspire each other. How we interpret a person and react to what we see, often we are unaware of our judgement. YOU then becomes about you”.
Over time, YOU has become an infinite reportage. A collection of portraits of us, human beings, people without their masks willing to be viewed, and wittingly view.
Hans Hiltermann has been an advertising photographer from 1986 till 2004, working for national and international clients. Throughout this period he simultaneously worked on his personal project, researching the minimalistic language of a portrait. This research led in 2002 to the start of YOU.
From 2002 – 2014 Hiltermann has made more than 500 portraits. All YOU.