When a 101-year-old woman offered to sit for photographer Anatasia Pottinger, she had one request: she would do anything so long as she could not be identified from the images. After the artist’s intimate sessions with this subject, she was moved to continue to explore the beauty of the aging body through portraits of models over the age of 100 for her ongoing project Centenarians.
Pottinger’s sculptural black-and-whites feel as timeless as the flesh she documents. Her textured renderings of pores, marks, and wrinkles veer into a realm of abstraction. At times, the artist finds exquisite patterns forged with age, and the body reads like a document or a tapestry, flawlessly preserving the passing decades with sun spots and curved spines.
Avoiding direct signifiers of her subjects’ identities, Pottinger invites us to insert ourselves into the images, to consider our own fading youth and to find the beauty in the transformations of our bodies and, ultimately, our own evolution and impermanence.