Six for Gold is the culmination of almost a decade of Wellington-based photographer Jake Mein’s visual practice; the photo book weaves together cityscapes, people, and visual styles in a poetic exploration of place and belonging.
Captured around the world between 2008 and 2017, this disparate collection of images form a narrative that asks as many questions as it answers. The photographs have no captions, and—excluding a short foreword—there is no text that gives an interpretation of them. Where were they photographed? Who are the people in the portraits? When were they taken? And more specifically, why? Such ambiguity opens a dialogue about belonging and identity, a conversation that gives Six for Gold its power. As Caroline McQuarrie notes in the foreword, “Where is home for a young person in today’s world? We are told we live in a global community, but here at the bottom of the world we understand that we are physical beings and physical distance matters.” Transitory lifestyle habits are changing the way we perceive self and belonging; will we always feel the distance between where we have come from and where we are?