scheltens & abbenes
When I first saw a serie of pictures of Scheltens & Abbenes, I though “That’s amazing, a fashion shoot, without girls and so elegant, so beautiful, so refreshing !” Then I looked at their website and I saw Art, commissions and editorial series of pictures. There is just a few photographers who try to be fashion and fine art photographers and make it with that success and talent.
They fascinated us by their methodical arrangements of assorted objects to create new ones. Even if it’s really a strict and considerable precise work process, for a really geometric outcome, we feel liberty and poetry when we look at it. They show us a new way to see objects and photography. Just as Charles and Ray Eames introduced a new way to see design years ago. The similarly between them is not just to be visionary, even in the way of working you can see it : Eames used to say “Art resides in the quality of doing, process is not magic” and “Design is a plan for arranging elements in such a way as best to accomplish a particular purpose.”
Their last serie “Detail in Reverse” show us one more time the magic touch they have: create,with the immaterial process of photography, objects by illusion.
They transformed common household draperies or stacked goblets made of cheap, reflective plastic or basics tins in pictures of sacred and decorated vessels.”After all, anything created solely for the camera is a projection. If the various props used here appear to be of great monetary value while in fact being nearly worthless the viewer will come away deceived. But it is up to the viewer to explore his own projections and transform his own disillusion into an analytic quest for the true nature of the photographic. To this end, the artists really offer more than enough clues in the form of tapestries which bring optical illusion and the reversal of handicraft as a counterpoint to the fore.” Very well explained by Frank van der Stok on their website’s introduction.
If photography is just about capture moments to keep them, it is the best demonstration!