How often do we stop and reflect on the art that is constantly created around us by random processes in nature? The unique symetry of a snowflake. The mathematical harmony of a seashell. The ordered chaos of foliage.
There are endless opportunities to be amazed if we only take the time to open our eyes. Some of the truly beautyful things in the world can not be appreciated unless we see beyond the obvious. In the two projects below I try to find different ways of looking at familiar things, water reflections and flowers.
I recently discovered a place where nature shows its creative side and that is in the reflections on a surface of water. When I really started to look closely at these reflections I realized that I could spend a long time watching, almost meditating, on how reality is constantly reinterpreted by the tiny, random undulations on the surface. Giving the images an impressionistic expression with varying degree of abstraction.The projection is also transient, just like reality it only exsist for a fraction of a second, never to be repeatd again.
With the photographs included in this series I try to pass on my own fascination of how the water, with endless variation, "repaints" the reality.
Often the camera registers an image with a lot of details. That is not how we see the real world around us. When we look at an object, like a flower, directly with our eyes, we can only concentrate on a small part at a time. The rest is registered in our peripheral vision. The colors and shapes present in our peripheral vision, and therefore lacking perceptible details, can however affect our emotional response to what we actively focus on.
With a variety of special techniques used in the series "Ethereal Flowers" I have tried to mimic this way of looking at flowers.
It also allows me to add in a touch of the dreamy and romantic emotions that the forms, patterns, and colors of flowers evokes in me.
Western aesthetics often focuses on eternal perfection like superficial beauty and symmetry. In contrast, traditional Japanese aesthetics puts emphasis on the fact that art, like life, is beautiful, not because it is perfect or eternal, but because both are imperfect and fleeting. In our contemporary culture I has come to stand in contrast to our clean, symmetrical, and right-angled design and architecture. Design and art influenced by the age-old Buddhist concept, “wabi-sabi”, is instead characterized by what we would consider flawed, uneven, unsymmetrical, and often aged and worn down objects.
I myself has been more intrigued by one of the more traditional meanings of "wabi-sabi" – the beauty in the evanescent feature of all things in nature. It could be a pile of decaying leaves, a withering rose, or the remains of grass and herbs whose fantastic shapes and structures are so prominent now when the ground is covered in snow. Beautiful examples of the natural cycle of growth and decay.
I call this project “Hana Wabi-Sabi” ("hana" is Japanese for flower)