Only The Sky Remains Untouched

To face your traumatic experiences is perhaps the toughest of all missions





**Winner Photobook Independent Award 2017**
**Honorable Mention Award IPA 2017**

Soldiers who suffer from Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are emotionally wounded and carry these wounds with them all their lives. The past 2 years I’ve been working on my new project ‘Only The Sky Remains Untouched’: portraits of 15 war veterans who suffer from PTSD. All photos were taken at ‘De Hembrug‘ in Zaandam, the Netherlands: a former weapons factory. In the heart of this terrain lies the so-called ‘Shock Forest’ where explosives were tested. Sybren Kuiper, who also made my book ‘Here are the young men’, has made a beautiful design for this new publication. It isn’t the book’s purpose to victimize these veterans. The goal is to show how severe this mental state can be, and how necessary it is to get it treated in an early stage. I use photography, interviews and imagination to represent these mental wounds: this inner war still going on.

In the progress, the book received a grant by the Tijlfonds (Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds) by the Adriaan Kinsbergenfonds and the Prins Hendrik Stichting. A big thank you to these funds!

The book couldn’t have been published without the 121 backers on A special thanks goes out to my two ambassadors: former marine Peter Bercx and former senator Marie Louise Tiesinga. It’s with delight that I mention 3 special funders who donated generously: Brenda Crombach of Formula Installatie Services, Petra Leene of the Amstel Gallery and the men of the Marines Business Club. Thank you for your commitment and big heart for the veterans and brothers in arms!

*Note: You can order the book by pressing one of the buttons above. Payment by credit card is possible if you choose ‘check out as a guest’ in the Paypal menu. 

By following the links (click on the names) you can read beautiful reviews by Colin Pantall (writer for a.o. the British Journal of Photography), Jim Casper (Lens Culture) Douglas Stockdale (The Photo Book) Jonathan Blaustein (A Photo Editor), Loring Knoblauch (Collector Daily) and in Dutch by Arno Haijtema (Volkskrant)