In this series of portraits by Uri Gershuni the sitter is given a present just before the taking of his photo. Gershuni gives the person being photographed, usually a close one, a member of family or close friend, a garment, sort of clothing or accessory. It is a piece of clothing that Gershuni knitted (crochet) by himself. The hour spent before the actual photography takes place, knitting the garment, are well invested towards the specific person being photographed. Knitting could be a hard labor, but in this case its a labor of love. The sitter on his/hers part usually removes his own clothing and put on the new woolen garment.
His participation in the photographic act may be read as an expression of gratitude. In this context, the garment functions as a kind of “transitional object”, which is invested with a comforting, supportive and protective power – an object that mediates between the photographer and the sitter, between image and reality. Gershuni sees a great affinity between photography and knitting. “both”, he explains, “include a synthesis between a production process and a creative process; between their technological and emotional dimensions”. Knitting is considered to be a functional art, and photography long struggled to secure its status in the field of “high” art. “in my photographic work”, Gershuni says, “I often consciously engage with this medium’s allegedly inferior elements, and with the idea of being an assembly line worker in the factory of images. The crochet needle and the camera enable me to cling to reality, and my fingers stay focused on the action of moving and pressing down”.