Tomasz Laczny

£325  book + print

ERNA HELENA ANJA art edition 

This handmade art edition is printed on Hahnemühle Black paper using gold Risograph Printing technique alongside inkjet prints printed on Japanese Kozo paper. It includes one unique A5 Cyanotype tanned in coffee on Fabriano Artistico paper (100% cotton, chlorine and acid free paper), signed. The book is housed in a slipcase.The book is available in a  limited edition of 45 copies, numbered and signed.

The true story of a mother's love for her daughter, inscribed in the history of the end of the World War II and its aftermath, told by a grandson, in whose life its elements sound echo like.

The end of the WWII. Polish-German borderland. A young German woman falls in love with a Polish guy. Back then, this kind of relationship between enemies was prohibited: both of them could be killed, if that would be discovered. Moreover, she gets pregnant and is hiding her pregnancy. After the war, she is imprisoned in the camp for Germans. She gives birth to the author’s mum but, because of her poor conditions, is not able to raise her and has to give her away. 

The European borders were changed after the WWII by the decision of a few key political figures and almost all Germans were expelled (the largest forced migration in history). The woman, hoping to be reunited with her daughter, decided to stay but had to gain Polish nationality. For her, as ex-German, life in Poland was extremely difficult. She lived in the shadow of guilt and memories of what had happened in Poland during the WWII. All her family had been expelled. And it took many years for her to be with her daughter together again.

The story of my grandmother is a story about losing identity, family, and country in the face of traumatic historic events. It represents the situation of many people and nations finding themselves struggling with finding their own identity after the war in the shadow of Nazism. Ironically, the story of my grandmother unfolds some similarities with my own. Living abroad for many years I experienced disconnection and isolation and struggled with finding my new identity. Also, there is the story of the absence of my daughter who I haven't seen for almost 3 years now.

The book is available in three variations: regular, artist’s book and collector’s edition. 




Photographs: Tomasz Laczny 

Texts: Tomasz Laczny 

Book design: Tomasz Laczny, a concept developed in the 2019 Photobook Making Masterclass by Yumi Goto, Sandra van der Doelen and Teun van der Heijden, RPS Tokyo, Japan

Photo edition: Tomasz Laczny, Christian Caujolle and Teun van der Heijden

Proofreading: Jonathan Nassim

Cover: hard, clothbound + slipcase

Print: one unique A5 Cyanotype tanned in coffee on Fabriano Artistico paper (100% cotton, chlorine and acid free paper), signed and stamped

Format: 160x220 mm

Number of pages: 70

Number of photographs: 24

Number of illustrations: 51

Number of archival documents: 9

Language version: English 

Edition: 45 copies 

Printing & binding: Tomasz Laczny (100% handmade)

Publication date: May 2021

Publisher: Tomasz Laczny and  BLOW UP PRESS 

ISBN: 978-83-952840-6-9

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