Marie Tomanova’s photography and video project Young American does not directly problematize what it means to be an American today, but celebrates the freedom and identity of the idea of an “America” still rife with dreams and possibilities, hope and freedom. It is about the idea of youth, the power of youth, and about the connection between people – the humanness that we all share. Her images, direct and without artifice, confront us with the power and beauty of people simply being, the young… just being. And in this just being is the essence of unity, love, and acceptance. It is a visualization of an America in which individuality is valued as uniqueness and not judged as lack of sameness. It is work that reverberates with the distant echo of August Sander’s Face of our Time, Robert Frank’s The Americans, Malick Sidibé’s exuberant youth of Mali, or, perhaps more closely, with Nan Goldin’s intimacy and Ryan McGinley’s freedom.
Marie Tomanova (1984) is a visual artist born in former Czechoslovakia, living and working in New York City. Her first monograph, Young American, will be published in winter 2018 by Paradigm Publishing. Tomanova has exhibited and curated internationally and her work has been featured in Dazed, i-D, VICE, Forbes, Der Spiegel, Purple, Huffington Post, Artforum, Interview Magazine, W Magazine, among others.