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Martin's Belongings

Observed Portraits, third prize stories

February 17, 2011

Tilburg, the Netherlands Martin (18) is the photographer’s half-brother. He returned to stay with their mother after living with his father for ten years. He was jobless, had no qualifications, and had spent time in a youth shelter. The photographer, who had had no contact with Martin over the previous decade, decided to use her camera to help get to know him again.


Location: Tilburg, the Netherlands


Photo Credit: Ananda van der Pluijm

Ananda van der Pluijm was born in Tilburg, the Netherlands in 1980. She studied Photographic and Cultural Studies at the University of Amsterdam and University of Leiden from 2002–2006, and photography at the FotoAcademie in Amsterdam from 2009-2012. After graduation, she was selected for GUP’s New Talent 2013. Her clients include Doctors without Borders, IKON, and Footlocker/Lacoste. She has produced independent projects 12 Nights-Liège, Martin, and Next door, and has been published in NRC Handelsblad and IKON. Exhibitions include GUP (upcoming), Graduation show Rauw, Kok&Stouwe pop-up exhibition and group exhibition Kaärmeët (2012).

In 2007, Van der Pluijm was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré, an autoimmune disease. As a result, she was homebound in a wheelchair and crutches. During the long period of rehabilitation, she started using photography to reconnect with her surroundings.

In her work, she focuses on loneliness, a lack of contact and connection with others. Photography to her is the means to make contact with her environment and subjects. She is currently working on several stories within this theme, trying to establish new connections of broken or lost contact. Van der Pluijm lives in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.


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