Elephants: Majesty, Magic, Imagination

Statement



For ages, humans have considered themselves to be the only creatures with emotions, morality, and culture. Yet the more we investigate the mysteries of the animal kingdom, the more we discover that is simply not true. Many scientists are now convinced that all these traits, once considered to be the hallmarks of humanity, are also found in elephants. So, what does that make them? Or even stranger, what does that make us?

“Elephants: Wild, Mystique” is a photo series that explores the bond between humans and animals through distinct lenses. In “Life,” viewers are shown a realistic view of elephants in the wild. Devoid of human involvement, it is an idyllic representation of the world as it should be. In “Interactions,” the photos employ a sense of romanticism, exploring the poetic sensibilities between living creatures. In “Postcards,” things take a turn for the magical. Igniting our sense of wonder and nostalgia, it conjures the postcard surrealism of big top shows to illustrate how animals live in our imagination. Finally, in "Memory and Imaginatio" I photographed kids and adults interacting with elephants in front of white screens. The smell, the sight, the joy, the laughter, the bonds, the pure emotions transported me back to my childhood and to the spectacle of the circus. This time I was the ringmaster. I choreographed my dreams.

Whether using realism, romanticism, or fantasy, these photographs function as a wakeup call. If we do not change our behavior, the future of these amazing creatures is bleak. Each of these projects offers a different way to connect with these animals. Through your heart, mind, or imagination, I hope you are as inspired by these elephants as I was.

Untitled photo





“Life” is a visual preservation of the grace and empathy of elephants. Balancing a mixture of inspiration and regret, this series examines the way these creatures navigate between freedom, domesticity, and destruction. Above all else, this projects questions where these beautiful animals will live in the future. Will it be in their natural habitat, or only in our shared imagination?





“Interactions” investigates the ever-fluctuating relationship between people and animals. Specifically zooming in on elephants — a creature that has been both worshiped and tormented by man — this series aims to explore the tension and romanticism in these extremes. The connections between man and beast will always be unpredictable, but “Interactions” shows us just how beautiful that synergy can be.





“Postcards” is a series that depicts the timelessness and wonder of bazaars and big top shows. Utilizing a postcard surrealism, this project combines photography, paintings, and mythology to transport the viewer back in time. Symbolizing the spirit of the circus, painted elephants take center stage, adding an element of natural beauty into a world of illusion.

Exploring in remote villages in Sri Lanka and Thailand, I photographed kids and adults interacting with elephants in front of white screens and in their natural environment. The smell, the sight, the joy, the laughter, the bonds, the pure emotions transported me back to my childhood and to the spectacle of the circus. This time I was the ringmaster. I choreographed my childhood dreams freeing the cast from the constraints of the big top, dissociating reality, and letting my imagination feed on the electric atmosphere of the moment. The act of creation came from the heart. On each of these magical photography days, the villagers were transported from their everyday life into a celebration of humanity and elephants. It was like a vision, something that came, connected us, and then disappeared. It was both lasting and ephemeral.



Exhibits and Awards


Limited Editions: 13x20" (15), 22x32" (7), 42x52" (3)
Contact Oliver Klink for additional information


Selected Prints available at:

ClampArt

247 West 29th Street, Ground Floor

New York City, 10001

+1 646.230.0020

info@clampart.com

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