Hulst, Ted van der - ARISTOCRATS
In 2017, I met a group of little people in Bali (Indonesia). They were in a pick up truck on the way to work. I was right away intrigued by their appearance. The pick up truck had some hanging banner on the side “Entertainment Midget Boxing”.
Boncel the manager of the group started to explain to me.
“We are a group of 15 little people who work and live together in Bali. We entertain tourists with a boxing show and sometimes we do costume party as clowns. We all come from different parts of Indonesia and we've been bullied our whole lives. Now we build a community to support each other where we feel safe and at home”
I went to see their show and it was a remarkable. The show made me want to know more about this group of characters so I decided to talk and ask them if I can come over to their house to see how they live.
I came over and met all of them in the house. I started to take several portraits and directed them. Through these photos, I wanted to show that we are dealing with some strong characters despite their physical size.
If you have been bullied your whole life because of your appearance, you'll develop a character that is much stronger than beauty. You become more than that, you are above society. They were born different and they fight their whole lives against society. They have accepted themselves for who they are and what they want, which is a beautiful thing.
With your help I would like to publish a book with Lecturis Publisher.
Thank you very much
Photography: Ted van der Hulst
Book production: Lecturis uitgeverij
Lithograph: Sebastiaan Hanekroot
Text: Tamalia Alisjahbana
. 140 pagina’s binnenwerk in HARDCOVER
· Boekblok 240 x 318mm staand
· 48 pag. 120 grs Munken Lynx rough
· 24 pag. 150 grs Magno gloss
· 68 pag. 120 grs Munken Lynx rough
. tip in photo polaroid back of the book
· 500 ex.
International Dutch photographer Ted van der Hulst’s photography book ‘Aristocrats’ is a timely and significant investigation into the strength of the human spirit. Van der Hulst captures intimate portraits of a dwarf community living in Bali and juxtaposes images of daily life, with their professional personas.
Employed in a voyeuristic tourist entertainment show in Kuta, dressed in costumes, they engage in acrobatics, dance, boxing and comedy routines. They develop masks to shield their sensitivity from the redicule and bullying by others because of their physical appearance.
Van der Hulst gains their trust and enters within their world, where they feel secure enough to shed their masks to reveal their rich characters and integrity. He describes moments that fascinate and ignite our imagination.
Now, more than ever, it is essential to speak via the potency of narrative imagery. Van der Hulst’s results are touching, enlightening and beautiful.