Born in 1986, Robin de Puy grew up in her parents’ family hotel in the small village of Oude-Tonge, South Holland. She graduated from the Fotoacademie Rotterdam in 2009, and won the Photo Academy Award the same year. In 2013, she received the Dutch Photographic Portrait Prize for a shot of fellow photographer An-Sofie Kesteleyn; in 2015 she took a 10,000km road trip across the US on a Harley Davidson, making images that she published as the book If This Is True, I’ll Never Have to Leave Home Again in 2016, and exhibited in the Fotomuseum The Hague.
The first week of Robin de Puy’s trip was recorded by documentary filmmaker Simone de Vries (who had earlier made films about Rutger Hauer and Erik Kessels) and cameraman Maarten van Rossem. Halfway through the trip, they rejoined her for another week. The resulting documentary can be seen here. In 2017 this documentary was nominated for an International Emmy Award.
“The American road trip is a photographic trope that’s often abused by countless photographers, but Robin de Puy, through her truly personal approach, has produced an opus that sets her apart from the masses. Her American road trip spanned 8,000 miles on a motorcycle, but you’ll rarely see pictures of stunning landscapes in her work. Instead, the Dutch photographer chose to focus on the people she met – sharing personal experiences that many photographes would shun. The result is a stunning study of today’s America made all the more relevant after Donald Trump’s election.” ~ TIME MAGAZINE about her first book ‘If This Is True’.
Her new series, Randy, started on her 2015 roadtrip when she spotted the teen in Ely, Nevada. He rode past her and she asked if she could take his photograph; back home in The Netherlands, she found he stuck in her mind, and returned to see him at the end of 2016, in February 2017, and in May 2017, making “hundreds” of portraits. An exhibition of this work, which includes photographs and videos, is on show at the Bonnefantenmuseum in Maastricht from 26 January-13 May; Hannibal also recently published the series as a photobook.
“A Joyous, Mysterious Portrait of Rural American Boyhood.” ~ The New Yorker