Old, wild, north. Kiruna (a town of 18.000) is the northern most town in Sweden, situated in the province of Lapland. More than a decade ago, the mining city of Kiruna made a big decision: to move the town brick by brick 3 km to the east. The re-development of Kiruna is a reconstruction project, as the Kirunavaara iron mine sits in the current town center.
The rocky ground began to shift, opening up giant fissures that threatened to swallow the whole city. The situation is quite a unique case in the world, that’s what impressed me about Kiruna and the combination of several architectural styles on a few square miles. From the pop restaurants’ signs to the industrial buildings, this kind of scenario reminded me of the Wim Wender’s movie «Don’t come knocking» and the bright sunny towns on Sunday of Edward Hopper’s paintings… Lapland, snow and ice as far as the eye can see, the cold that runs through your bones and that puts you in a state of grace to take pictures. It makes you deeply feel your body, its reactions to the environment and see the reality with a great analytical lucidity.
My vision of the uncontaminated Lapland, surrounded by nature and mixed with the images that have always fascinated me about the «Beat Generation». This is how my series was born, I named it Far North.
Irene Tondeli is an Italian photographer and art director
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