Reading through Time: 2 mins
Fin Serck-Hanssen’s tender portrait of his friend seeing that she undergoes half a decade of gender-confirming surgeries is currently published as a photobook, Hedda
These days, services for gender-confirming treatment in Oslo, Norway, remain slow, convoluted , and restrictive. Applicants endure long waitlists intended for assessment and treatment, as well as the majority are denied it altogether. A 2017 review indicated that the country’s only clinic providing government-funded gender-affirming care, the Nasjonal Behandlingstjeneste for Transseksualisme (NBTS) inside Oslo, accepts approximately 1 / 4 of annual referrals.
In 2015, Hedda, then in her mid-twenties, began her gender-confirming journey in Norway. Her mother asked the family’s close friend, Norwegian photographer Fin Serck-Hanssen , who had known Hedda since she was obviously a baby, to document the knowledge. He agreed, accompanying the girl while she underwent over half a decade of treatment. Given the care obtainable in Norway, and the length of time included, Hedda travelled elsewhere, increasing funds herself — through Oslo to Buenos Espaces and Bangkok for beauty surgeries and a vaginoplasty.
The project, now released as the photobook Hedda , documents a journey of gender confirmation. However it is also a portrait of Hedda herself. “I had been just trying to see the girl as I see her, ” says Serck-Hanssen , “not focusing so much on gender. ” The book by itself echoes this approach. Hedda’s selfies punctuate Serck-Hanssen’s gentle documents of her treatment. And the photographer also captures Hedda photographing and gazing from herself — the work becoming a mixture of his perception plus her own.
Heavy black ink veils several of the photographs, including the publication’s front cover — a style conceived of by designers Mevis & Van Deursen, to obscure images regarding which Hedda felt unpleasant. Indeed, Serck-Hanssen’s project as well as the book itself endeavour to reflect Hedda’s journey. A window into her encounters and one that Serck-Hanssen expectations might support other people embarking on gender-confirming treatment themselves.
Hedda is published by Loose Joints.