If three events are a trend, as they say in newspapers, then there certainly appears to be a fascination in young girls on the cusp of adulthood as photographic subject matter. Two years ago, Dutch photographer Rineke Dijkstra won the Citibank Prize with her photographs of awkward teenage girls on the beaches of Europe and this year Hellen van Meene offers more images of young teenagers in the Netherlands and Japan. Hannah Starkey offers prints of young girls in contemporary scenarios – or as the caption puts it, in ‘a narrative film of modern banality’.Indeed, Starkey looks as if she is documenting a slice of life, but her characters are actors rather than real teenagers. This gives the work a kind of film-still quality that harks back to art photographer Cindy Sherman, and a feeling of distilled boredom – an accurate mirror of the teenage existence. The large format and high production values means that their diffident atmosphere is propelled to major proportions, and the result is an examination of the minutiae of the moment.
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