I started working on my Paradise essay in 2006, when I moved back to Stockholm after living in different European cities. Though born and raised in Milan, as a half-Swede I have always felt connected to this city.
The approach of my photography is direct, intuitive and fast. I’m trying to be faster than my second thoughts. I see it as an exercise in listening to my instinct without thinking too much.
Confronted with an atmosphere quite different to the stereotypical image of Stockholm, I started documenting this darker mood, the grittier side of daily life up here in the north.
The essay reflects my instant reactions to the ambiguity of a place I am so deeply related to through my family history. In a broader sense, I want it to be primarily an artistic report on the consumerist and capitalistic aspects of western European urban culture. Paradise stands for the illusion of this system. It’s the dream we are following through billboards, TV and the Internet. - Joakim Kocjancic