We naturally want to look at that which we are not allowed to see. Stories, images, footage from inside North Korea always garners our hushed attention as we look into a place beyond our knowing, kept from our true understanding. What is continually mesmerizing is the surreal and pristine quality in which every inch is kept, enough to give you chills, the spaces like perfectly decorated cakes no one will ever get to eat.
Photographer Julia brings us these images from her time in the DPRK, an experience in which she used her photography to stay grounded. Worried that her lenses might be confiscated, she traveled with minimal equipment: a DSLR body and 24mm lens. But, to her surprise, she was able capture with relative freedom and thus let us see in as well. In regards to this collection of images she says, “I started treating every image like a film still from a movie lacking a main character.”
What follows are her thoughts and her moments inside perfectly kept landscapes, candy-colored locker rooms, empty streets, and nights that did nothing but hush.