Frederick Carnet‘s photographs from ‘Der Leere Teich’ or ‘The Empty Pond’ are all of a moment on an afternoon in early October when a family and friends gather around a pool to fish for carp.
Tag der Deutschen Einheit is the national day of Germany – and celebrated on the 3rd October as a public holiday – and commemorates the anniversary of German reunification in 1990. It was on this day last year that Carnet joined with others at a small pond in rural Germany to take part in a ritual that takes place every two years.
Soup is prepared and put on the fire while the party goers drain the pond of its water. The fish are then caught by hand and put into clean water. Some are eaten on the day, the rest taken away and eaten throughout the year. What’s most striking about these photographs is Carnet’s ability to capture the sequence of events in compositions that are beautiful within themselves, his aesthetic rooted in his experience as an advertising photographer and knowledge of graphic art. What separates his pictures from his background is the simplicity of the moment, the desire to capture a daily ritual that in and of itself is small yet as a whole is profound in its beauty; in it’s wholesomeness. A picture of people brought together by common cause; love, kinship, community.