In a world where cities are changing towards landspaces filled with signs that constantly try to capture our attention, I like to concentrate on those humble and soft lines that go unnoticed, that were not created to be noticed, but that have a beauty by themselves. In other words, I try to get all the geometric beauty of the city, without relying on pre-defined geometry or architecture, and being as sober and minimalistic as possible.
Industrial and urban landscapes
by Pedro Correa (Spain)
I have always been fascinated by the urban life, its changing energy, its buoyancy and how light likes to play with its geometry. For the last 5 years I have been working on a project called “Lines and light” in which I try to capture the beauty of those moments where light plays with urban lines that were unnoticeable a moment before.
Portfolio from the Paysages industriels workshop with Mark Power, April 2012.
Written review by
Editor-at-Large of international photography magazine GUP, Netherlands
In line with Eugene Atget's archiving of Parisian urbanism, a tradition evolved in which photographers stress on the strangeness of the familiar, inviting the viewer to look at their everyday surroundings with intensified accuracy. The work that Pedro Correo produced for this workshop very much is in line with that tradition. Categorization and conceptual approaches have turned out to be a very apt strategy to come to terms with the chaos of culture, specifically urban culture. Street- and landscape photographers alike have been inspired by Surrealism to educate and even stimulate the unaware viewer to have a closer look at things.
I like how Pedro takes that direction. It is obvious that he has a good eye for structures that easily go unnoticed by others. This is one of the most basic characteristic that decides if someone qualifies to be a good photographer. However, to become an outstanding photographer one also needs to be articulated and ideally have a recognizable style that characterizes the images as typical for the person that created the work.
There is more to that than mere selecting and editing. It asks more from the photographer than just having a higher awareness followed by a straight documentation. This is the burden of photographic history: you just need to add up to what is already there, including the vast and rich history of photography (including the vast amount of images, produced by professionals and amateurs alike, available online today) that lives along the history of the world in general.
I would like to suggest to Pedro to keep up the good work in addressing the aesthetics of our urban surroundings, its geometry. But something has to be added, photographically, to make this work become lifted from the ordinary. I guess what still could be improved in his approach is an enhanced artistic signature, an articulation that stresses how this is not only how the urban world looks like but how he specifically sees it, with his own eyes, from his personal perspective, arriving from his own approach to live. In that way, combined with a stricter limitation of subject, his photography will become something on itself, something that not just copies what is there but something that functions as an addition to the actual.