This artist’s anonymous self-portraits are an intoxicating glimpse into what goes on behind closed doors
Co-founded by Ben Freeman of Ditto Press and Deano Jo of Real Gold, Future Artefacts celebrate the art of media in its physical form – music, publishing, art and fashion – by championing the craftsmanship that goes into each object, and how they fit in digital age. In the lead up to the Future Artefacts fair in October, the duo are sharing some of their favourite publications with Dazed
In 2013 it was reported that there were over 500 known fetishes – BDSM, role play and exhibitionism topped the list in typical fashion. Earlier this year, anonymous self-portrait photographer, known simply as 2041, added one more, as a concealment fetishist. Discovered by publisher Lewis Chaplin while trawling through flickr, 2041’s eponymous book shares 72 images (initially cut down from 60,000) of the artist engaging in different 'personas' while covered in an array of garments and fabrics. "Once you understand the background, the book becomes even more captivating," explains Freeman and Jo. "Although it is in some ways an anti-portrait book (2041’s body is always completely concealed), you get a sense of the ‘real’ 2041 communicated through this choice of composition and gesture. The project allows you to glimpse inside a very private, peripheral world and leads you to wonder what else is out there."
Published by Here Press, 2041’s physicality shows that design can often be lost on any subsequent digital reproductions. Without a hardcopy, details like thin bible paper leaflets, sewn in sections and a photo insert that includes several alternative images – allowing readers to interact with the cover and make 2041 feel like a treasured family album – aren’t able to be fully appreciated. "The quality of the photographs and the mundane suburban backdrops behind 2041, combined with the thoughtful materials and print, produce an enigmatic feeling to the book," says Freeman and Jo. "2041 flourished online on flickr, but platforms come and go – in 30 years time these digital files may have disappeared. The book captures, catalogues and preserves a small part of the world of 2041 and the world that we live in right now."
2041 is available now. Here London will exhibit at Future Artefacts, a three-day event held in October where the public can purchase and peruse from their favourite producers under one roof. Keep an eye on this site for more