US Reporter

‘The Identity of Holland,’ a picturesque compilation of Dutch clothing and culture

Photo credit: Ezra Böhm

The young photographer Ezra Böhm has won the prestigious Sony World Photography Awards for his series called “The Identity Of Holland.” Böhm snatched the title Student Photographer of the Year 2022.

In the 15th annual competition, many artists were awarded for their impressive photographs. These included Adam Ferguson, who was named Photographer of The Year and others in different categories, including Student, Youth and Professional categories.

Böhm decided that he wanted to explore the culture after seeing people still wearing the costumes today, which were from a hundred years ago. According to Böhm, “After a while, I came into contact with some people who are still wearing the costumes today. Once I had (established) contact with them, things went quickly. There are only a few people who wear traditional clothing and they often know each other.”

Credit: Ezra Böhm

Groups of people in Dutch outfits stand unsmiling and expressionless as if they are living history lessons. The subjects say that these clothes, dating back decades ago, help them keep their culture alive for future generations. Further, they attend the church or sing in choirs, wearing them proudly.

“The goal was to celebrate and cherish the old culture of the Netherlands,” Böhm explained.

“But apart from all the beauty, these communities have something valuable in common that we often miss in modern society: togetherness, security and pride.”

Credit: Ezra Böhm

“Many people today have lost their cultural roots and can feel alienated in a society full of global citizens. By showing these communities to the world, I hope that people start to look at their own cultural roots again,” Böhm added.

Böhm spent more than a year to check the area, meet with residents and take photographs.

Böhm is currently a student at the Nederlandse Academie voor Beeldcreatie in Eindhoven. For his award, the organizers have granted him 30,000 euros or $33,000 worth of Sony equipment for the school.

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