Vivian Keulards: Flaming Grace
What is it about redheads? They are a bit other-worldly and of their own tribe. Dutch photographer, Vivian Keulards has been drawn to red headed children for a long time and has spent almost a decade capturing these crimson topped beauties in her series, Flaming Grace. Vivian has created a Dutch crowd funding campaign to help fund her book project. If you are interested in pre-purchasing a book or receiving other rewards, the English instructions are here.
As Vivian states:
I’m ready to share all of my portraits with the world in a beautiful, exclusive book. Well known book designer Teun van der Heijden made a wonderful design for my red head book. The beginning is surprising! You page through the shades of red and then you view the portraits in a pleasant rhythm. It will be a hardcover linen (printed) book with 104 pages. The size will be 28 x 24,5 cm (11 x 9,65 inches) and there will only be 500 copies available. Each book will have his own unique number. If you’re interesting in ordering a copy, please have a look here: https://www.voordekunst.nl/projecten/4685-flaming-grace.
Vivian Keulards was born and raised in the Netherlands and graduated as a portrait photographer at the Photo Academy in Amsterdam in 2009. She went on to earn a Master Degree in Communication Science where her fascination for images and photography was born. One year after her graduation from the Photo Academy, Vivan moved to Colorado where she and her family lived for three years. During this time, she learned a lot about photography, her work and herself.
Vivian’s work is always about human beings. She loves to meet new people, preferably outside her familiar world. She’s fascinated by their self-consciousness, their captivating appearances, their vulnerability, their life stories and their views of life and death. Her desire to make portraits grew out of her natural interest in people.
Vivian’s portraits have been published, exhibited and rewarded internationally, and can be found in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston. In 2015, Vivian was a Critical Mass top 50 finalist with her series Behind her Uniform. Her series Flaming Grace was shown in the Argentina Festival de la Luz XVIII, the Ogden Museum in New Orleans, and the Art of Photography Show in San Diego.
Currently, Vivian lives in the Netherlands where she works on personal photography projects and assignments. She also teaches classes and workshops.
For years now I’ve been fascinated by red headed children. In 2007 I made the first portraits in the series Flaming Grace. Until today I’ve photographed many red headed children, not only in The Netherlands, but also in the US and Ireland. Why? Simply because I think they’re breathtaking beautiful! I find these children mystical and magical and they push my creativity to the max. They’re visual poetry to me! Why only children? Children are still authentic and not aware of their environment en that makes them wonderful to work with. So young, with already such an overwhelming effect.
Along the way I learned a lot about the red hair MCR1-gene and heard many stories and myths. Some people say red heads will likely be extinct in the next 100 years. This because the gene is not dominant enough to survive. I don’t know if it’s true, but if so, I might even have written history.
For centuries they’re worldwide in the interest among writers, painters and photographers. That’s not surprising, when you consider that only two percent of the world’s population carries this unique natural hair color. The interest was not always positive. In the Middle Ages it was thought that redheads were bewitched; or that they were vampires or werewolves. In those days they often died at the stake. Also I still hear stories of red heads being bullied, only because of their hair color.
Thank goodness they’re also celebrated all over the world and nowadays there are even redhead festivals in different countries. So I’m not the only admirer of this unique group who loves their beautiful hair color.
Posts on Lenscratch may not be reproduced without the permission of the Lenscratch staff and the photographer.
Kathleen Buckalew: The States Project: DelawareSeptember 17th, 2021
Jon Cox: The States Project: DelawareSeptember 15th, 2021
Peter Kayafas: Coney Island WaterdanceSeptember 3rd, 2021
Peter Nitsch: Tango in the Big MangoSeptember 2nd, 2021