○ Series of portraits, 2013 to the present day
○ Publication Volkskrant Magazine
When Sistermans once photographed her partner yawning, she realised for the first time how revealing and vulnerable the involuntary impulse actually is. The last remainder of our animal origins, a kind of originality, a turning-inside-out – that is what seemed to be exposed. This idea led her in 2013 to start making the series of portraits called Yawn.
The writer Bernke Klein Zandvoort, for her part, felt stimulated by Sisterman’s photos and is now working on an essay.
A short excerpt:
In the European Middle Ages, yawning was taboo for a long time, since it was believed that our spirit could then easily escape. Nowadays, some scientists think that we yawn in order to cool down our brains. Other people claim that it is actually an epileptic phenomenon, or a social regulator to get everyone to go off to bed at more or less the same time – it has even been asserted that we are subconsciously making erotic signals by yawning. What can be firmly established is that all of us do so about ten to fifteen times a day, that we set other people and our own dogs off by doing so – and that even unborn children yawn. Apart from that, the yawn remains something mysterious. All we can do is to submit to it, and observe it. But what should we be observing?