Tobias Nicolai

Eylem Teke for Zetland

My poems are like my acne. They shall not disappear.

“Yahya Hassen has done something truly unique. He has paved a road that others can take. When we meet Eylem at her high school, hardly anyone knows that Eylem is taking that road now. Only a few know that she writes poetry, that she uses them to tear herself away from the parallel society she feels she has grown up in. Now even her parents know about her poetry. But they will very soon.” Until now it was only Eylem’s student counsellor and two of her teachers that knew about it. So it’s a huge honor to have a tiny-little photo-part in the introduction of Eylem Teke to the rest of Denmark. 

Read online here

Shot on assignment for  Zetland

Words by Nanna Schelde

Art direction Mikkel Bøgild Jacobsen

The army’s clenched fist for Weekendavisen

Can Denmark defend itself? NATO’s recent critique of the Danish army is the most serious in a very long time. We went to the military training grounds in Oksbøl to meet those it’s actually about: the army’s 1st brigade - or ‘the army’s clenched fist’ as the brigadier general has dubbed it. How do they view the critique and most importantly themselves?

“The general gets up and walks happily amongst his people with a straw in the corner of his mouth. Suddenly it rains from a blue sky. The heath lies long and flat with brown dunes and light green moss under the lyme grass. A rainbow appears behind enemy lines. The enemy are the targets that a soldier dressed in an orange vest moves up and down in the landscape with an iPad. Everything smells of gunpowder. Sand drifts when the 556 rifles are fired. Soldiers move forward on their bellies agile and focused. The shouting is precise: “Tank 12 o’clock!” “Lund! Left flank!” “Im down to seven mags, Theis!”It yanks in our spinal column, when the two infantry combat vehicles fires. A dusin armored infantryman runs from an elevated sandbowl towards a patch of forest.”

Read online here

Shot on assignment for Weekendavisen

Photo editor: Mie Brinkmann

Words: Magnus Boding Hansen

You, Me & the Moments by Pomegranate Press

Two photos featured in new group zine ‘You, Me & the Moments’ published by Pomegranate Press out of Richmond, VA.

39 photographers celebrating accessibility and community on 48 pages, sized 8.5×11 and saddle-stitched, first edition of 150 copies available here

Featured photographers: Ricardo Nagaoka, Lakshan Dharmapriya, Michael Tyrone DelaneyJulien Babigeon, Alexa Fahlman, Meghan MarinWade Schaul, Darío Toscano, Kent Andreasen, David Donigan, Erinn Springer, Michel Nguie,
Francesca Matta, Chris Behroozian, Marco Arguello, Tobias Nicolai, Ryan Frigillana, Madeline CassAlan NakkashMarissa Marino, Will CoxAlec Castillo, Carlos Morante, Grady Neilan, Bryanna Bennett, OK McCausland, Kate SweeneyEllis Scott, June Kim, Bea HelmanEmily George, Edwin Beauchamp, Clark HodginGuy Ferguson, Mia Song, Jason FalchookKyle Jeffers, Jakub JakobiszynMaryam Khastoo.

From fossil fuel to wind for Zetland

A coal grabber stands symbolically beneath a huge yellow coal crane that will retire as part of the green transition. Two gigantic, unemployed Mærsk oil rigs rest as monuments over bygone fossil success that was caught up by the present. Not far away wind turbine towers and generators stand as a testament to the new and booming industry in the harbourcity, that makes both carpenters and taxi drivers want to change careers. Frank Østergaard worked in coal, then twenty years on the oil fields of the northern sea and now he assembles offshore wind turbines. The green transition is very concrete at Esbjerg Harbour. Many oil and coal cities around the world fear economic decay, but Esbjerg has been able to follow the wind of change. Esbjergs secret is that the city has tried it before.

Read it online here

Art Director: Mikkel Bøgild Jacobsen

See more diptychs below

Viborg - a rising phoenix for Weekendavisen

For several hundred years the cathedral city of Viborg has lived with the belief that its history alone was enough. Arrogant, self-satisfied and closed around itself. Once an epicentre for both religion and power the city has gone from being a conservative city of kings to a modern city of culture. Like a rising phoenix the age-old city is now embracing a new identity. Viborg has just been crowned as this year’s UNESCO Creative City with The Animation Workshop as the primary factor behind the appointment. TAW is in the world’s top ten of animation schools and educates some of the best animators and comic illustrators.

Shot for Weekendavisen with the great Amalie Schroll Munk at the keyboard and photo editor Mie Brinkmann behind the scenes.

Read it online

Kh Marie for Weekendavisen

Marie Højlund is an uncompromising and creative tsunami. That was settled before the shoot with the deal that, “we don’t stop before it’s good”. You may know her from Tiger Tunes, Marybell Katastrophy or Nephew. She also has a ph.d.-degree in noise and is a lecturer at Aarhus University. But now you also have to get to know her as Kh Marie. The release of the solo album with a scented cover and the related sensory concerts were planned before covid-19 overshadowed everything in the society but the project speaks very well to the time:

“Our world has become more sterile, literally. Right now there is no room for the ugly and disgusting, that we do everything in our power to hide away. There’s no more cheese sandwiches on the train. And that’s a shame.”

The otherworldly light dress is designed by Christian Albrechtsen, Mathias Hersland og Ditte Johanne Krogh Bertelsen. 

Words: Asker Hedegaard Boye

Photo editor: Mie Brinkmann

Malte Tellerup for Weekendavisen

In both his books, ‘Markløs’ and ‘Hedeselskabet’, Malte Tellerup writes about provincial life in the outskirts of Denmark. But after a few Horus together we had away from the provincial realisme that characterizes his authorship. Through Emperor Mings blue chambers, swinging over Hellegård stream on a ship rope to the turquoise backdrop that can be substituted for everything imaginable and further on to a deja-vu with cartwheels on a exact copy of the green Windows XP background hill. Its own little mythology.

Read online here

Text Jeppe Bentzen

Photo editor Mie Brinkmann

Art Direction Katinka Bukh

Layout Mai-Britt Bernt Jensen

Featured in Dansk Dokumentarisme podcast

Dansk Dokumentarisme is a quarterly newsletter about documentary photography in Denmark. Besides the newsletter the three people behind - Emil Ryge, Sigrid Nygaard & Anders Rye Skjoldjensen - also arrange talks and records podcast on various subjects related to documentary photography.

Their eighth installment is about ‘The Ritual’ and it can be heard (only in danish) in various podcast apps (Apple Podcasts, Google PodcastsSpotify) and online here

First prize in Danish Picture of the Year 2019

Friday the 6th of March ‘The Ritual’ was awarded gold in the open class category in Danish Picture of the Year 2019 at the award ceremony held at the Royal Danish Library.

“The winning series by Tobias Nicolai is technically well-executed, and the viewer is in the middle of the ‘war’. It is energetic and completely trashed, and the jury agrees that it fits especially well in the open class category, because it becomes grotesque when it is portrayed in a war aesthetic. There is something weirdly absurd about the situation, that the photographer completes in the style. The scenes play out in a closed off room out of time and place, which is a great strength that supports the visual language. The situation is not exposed. This is awesome, and we are not looking at it with critical eyes, but we have to ask the question: What kind of weird species are humans? So this rite of passage is in line with other extreme rituals around the world.”

The still division jury consisted of Mie Brinkmann, photo editor Weekendavisen; Christian Vium, anthropologist, photographer and filmmaker; Michael Koch, freelance photographer; Kristine Kiilerich, photographer and Mette Frandsen, photographer.

The winners, honourable mentions and runner-ups will be exhibited at the Royal Danish Library, and after that travel around to different venues in Denmark.

Chico Hot Springs Portfolio Review 2020 attendee

The annual Chico Review is hosted by Charcoal Book Club in Pray, Montana in the beginning of april. 58 artists are invited to spend the week with the most respected and influential artists, bookmakers, gallerists, and curators in contemporary photography. Among the 58 selected, six applicants have received merit scholarships based on their submitted projects: Ana Hop, Jacqueline Leigh Silberbush, Madeline Cass, Morganna Magee, Pam Heemskerk and Tobias Nicolai.

Keynote speakers are Alessandra Sanguinetti, Jim Goldberg, Vanessa Winship, Todd Hido, Awoiska van der Molen, Raymond Meeks. The review team consists of a broad representation of the international photo industry; Stanley / Barker, Red Hook Editions, Trespasser Books, Light Work, Pier 24 Photography amongst others.

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