Tales of lipstick and virtue


Last year Anna Ehrenstein won the “Landskrona Foto and Artproof Portfolio of the Year Award” with the series Tales of lipstick and virtue. As part of the award, Landskrona Foto Festival welcomes Ehrenstein back this year as one of the exhibitors. Ehrenstein was born in Germany in 1993; she is of Albanian origin and lives today in Berlin. It is her dual heritage (an experience shared by many Europeans) of coming from two cultures, but ending up in the join between them, that gives Ehrenstein her special gaze – a meta-perspective.

In Tales of lipstick and virtue Ehrenstein works with photography. She portrays Albanian women but also depicts cosmetic artefacts which are transformed via photography into objects of art. In the world today every individual has more opportunities than ever before to build up a visual trademark and to show who we are. Ehrenstein explores how aesthetic ideals are changed in our commercial times when possibilities to make radical changes to our appearance are increasingly available.

The pictures in the series are about authenticity: What is it? Do false nails, body implants or false hair make us fake? Or is it the opposite? Do we become more ourselves, do we try to match our exterior with our inner self? Can an exaggeration of the ideals be viewed as an act of resistance? With humour and openness, Ehrenstein breaks down norms of beauty into their constituent parts, causing authenticity and fake to merge together.

Ehrenstein has studied photography and media, she exhibits all over Europe and is regarded as a rising star in the photographic sky.