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Symbiartic

Symbiartic

The art of science and the science of art.

How Well Will You Age?

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When we're young, we quietly take stock of those around us and reject notions that we will eventually gain weight, deflate, wrinkle and sag. When we're old, we reminisce about the smooth, taut and strong bodies of our youth. You can look to your relatives for rough facsimiles of how you might age, but ultimately, only time will tell what you might look like in 5, 15, or 30 years.

Photographer Irina Werning taps into our fascination with aging in a series of photographs she calls Back to the Future. But instead of photographing people and waiting patiently for the years to pass, she solicits childhood photographs from strangers and then recreates the scene today. The results are mesmerizing:

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

Mechi 1990 & 2010, Buenos Aires; from Irina Werning's Back to the Future project

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

Pancho 1983 & 2010, Buenos Aires; from Irina Werning's Back to the Future project

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

Zurbano Family 1999 & 2011, Buenos Aires; from Irina Werning's Back to the Future project

from Irina Werning's book Back to the Future

Johanes 1994 & 2011, Hamburg; from Irina Werning's Back to the Future project

Werning is just now publishing a limited-edition book that documents this multi-year project. You can also apply to participate in her project; she is currently looking for residents of Korea, Tokyo, and Taiwan to add to the collection.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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