Boogie - Persona Non Grata
Text(s) by Tracy Quantizing
Photograph(s) by Boogie
27.9 x 20.3 cm
Publisher: Powerhouse Books
“What comes to mind when you think of Thailand? For many, it’s The Land of Smiles, but that couldn’t be further from the truth,” argues Boogie, “at least when you take the time to scratch beneath the surface.” After extensive research, the acclaimed street photographer took ten long trips to the country, where he quickly immersed himself in the underbelly of its street culture.
“On one hand you have people doing whatever it takes to save their face, trying to look right at all times, avoiding any, anykind of confrontation; going as far as to tell you ONLY what you want to hear, even if they don’t mean it, even if it’s not true,” concludes Boogie. “But on the other hand, there is rampant prostitution; underage girls are sold into it by their families…Visually, it’s just stunning. Food is also amazing. And the fact that most people don’t speak English, or are too shy to even try, makes it even more interesting. Different planet…”
Documenting daily life in Thailand’s bustling capital, Boogie uncovers, with his raw aesthetic, a bleak reality, an often unseen side of its ever-smiling inhabitants. This is the latest installment in a photography icon’s lifelong exploration of humanity.
Born and raised in Belgrade, Serbia, Boogie began photographing rebellion and unrest during the civil war that ravaged his country during the 1990s. Growing up in a war-torn country defined Boogie’s style and attraction to the darker side of human existance. He moved to New York City in 1998. He has shot campaigns for high-profile clients and has been published in top fashion publications around the world, and has exhibited widely in the U.S., Europe and Asia. Boogie lives and works between Brooklyn and Belgrade, and is the author of some nine influential photo books, among them is It’s All Good (2006, updated 2016), Boogie–the Limited Edition (2007), Belgrade Belongs to Me (2008), and Moscow (2019), all with powerHouse Books.