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Photobook / Crowdfunding Campaign

Ludwig Nikulski

»Hello I Love You«

Ludwig Nikulski went to Japan with a Japanese love letter. To find the person who wrote the letter to him. From Tokyo to the east coast, through the deserted region of Fukushima, over a road cut into the ice through the Hachimantai Mountains to the west coast, through green hills back to Tokyo. Ludwig documented this search with his medium format camera – and, by the way, commissioned the love letter beforehand. Stop! Exactly, the letter was fictional. And so was the person who wrote it to him. The search was an imaginary illusion, an artistic experiment. He always carried a bouquet of flowers with him. And listened to a playlist of love songs. Ludwig showed the letter to acquaintances on the street and asked for help. The reactions were very different: from cold apathy to applause and drinks. Or just sitting quietly next to each other and feeling connected in a strange way.

What happens if you look for someone who doesn’t exist? One can despair. Ludwig made up the lie. He fulfilled it and was looking for nothing. Still, he worked hard on this task completely without knowing what was going to happen. And so signs were sent to him. Love signs. A heart made of lamps on a roof in Tokyo. An oversized love letter in the mountains of Nagano. Or the (at that time still future) title of my project “Hello I Love You”, written on the cappy of an old man to whom he showed the letter. And even if the search was just fictional, these signs were evidences to Ludwig that he was on the right track.

Now “Hello I Love You“ is going to be published at Kerber Verlag.
In 2018 there was already a self-published edition of 10 copies. The book was awarded at the German Photo Book Award and was a finalist for the Award for Emerging Artists in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. 48 analog color photographs on 110 pages. A narrow portrait format, based on Japanese envelopes. Held in light pink like the cherry blossoms. Now a linen cover is to be added and a slightly revised cover design by none other than Studio Lindhorst-Emme! Thus the book is completed as a loving object.

And what about the love letter? It was originally written by Yoko Gotoh. It is a philosophical treatise on how people rarely care for and blindly walk past each other. A laconic description of our time – with a personal twist.

If this project speaks to you, please consider supporting Ludwig’s current Kickstarter campaign, which runs until Sunday, Oct 18, 2020, and help him publish his photobook »Hello I Love You« with Kerber Verlag!

Artist websiteKickstarter Campaign | All features on PiB for Ludwig Nikulski

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