Strawberries in Winter
Agriculture and the rural landscape have changed more in the last 40 years than in the last 400 years. Freya Najade‘s series of photographs Strawberries in Winter (2011−2013) takes us to greenhouses, in which increasingly high-yielding crops are grown regardless of location, time of year, and the laws of nature.
Consumers have learned to demand products that are affordable, homogeneous and available throughout the year. By using the latest technology farmers can produce more vegetables in enclosed rooms without natural light or air. The time of year and time of day become irrelevant, and people decide the shape, colour and taste of fruits and vegetables. Consumers are rarely aware of how intensive agriculture works and what it looks like, even though everyone contributes to the changes in the food industry. Through her project, Najade wanted to understand how agriculture responds to the growing needs and demands of retailers and consumers.
Freya Najade’s series Strawberries in Winter are exhibited at the Finnish Museum of Photography as part of the Post-Food exhibition. The exhibition is open 3.2.-29.4.2017
Exhibition opening on Thursday 2nd February 2017, 6-8 pm
Nowadays, fruits and vegetables have to meet specific aesthetic standards set by supermarkets before they can be sold in their stores. Guidelines establish the exact size, shape and colour each variety should comply with.
In ‘Misfits’ I photograph fruits and vegetables that failed to meet these specifications and as a result, got either thrown away or processed into juice or soup. The marks, shape and colour for which these varieties were deselected didn’t have any impact on their taste. Growers got about five per cent of the price they would have received for a product that met the standards.
Freya Najade’s series Misfits are exhibited at the Virka gallery as part of the Food Waste exhibition. The exhibition is open 22.2.-28.5.2017
Freya Najade (born 1977) is a German-born photographer who works in London.