Ari Versluis & Ellie Uyttenbroek

Photographer Ari Versluis and stylist Ellie Uyttenbroek have pursed their interest in the diversity of social groups and the commonality of dress codes for over twelve years. Their massive series Exactitudes, a contradiction of “exact” and “attitudes”, is the result of a careful collaboration that combines stylistic control with documentary objectivity. By photographing their subjects in an identical framework, with similar poses and a strictly observed dress code, Versluis and Uyttenbroek provide an almost scientific, anthropological record of people’s attempts to distinguish themselves from others by assuming a group identity. The apparent contradiction between individuality and uniformity is, however, taken to such extremes in their arresting objective-looking photographic viewpoint and stylistic analysis that the artistic aspect clearly dominates the purely documentary element. Based in Rotterdam, where the heterogeneous, multicultural street scene served as their inspiration and primary source for several years, their collaboration now frequently extends to countries abroad, including Brasil, China, Morocco, Africa, Italy and the United States. Their installation for CONTACT provides an overview of the scope and complexity of Exactitudes, which now includes more than 90 different groups of 12 subjects. Recent exhibitions include Centro Cultural Borges, Buenos Aires; Fotoseptiembre Centro de Imagen, Mexico City; Museum Boymans van Beuningen, Rotterdam; and the International Fashion and Photography Festival Hyeres, France.