What's happening in Bence Bakonyi's photographs?
The Hungarian photographer spent six months in China and came back with these uncanny, ambiguous images
Bence Bakonyi doesn’t say much about his work. His silence leaves a sense of ambiguity. Is the dog falling or jumping? What will happen when the plant pot reaches the floor? Is gravity even present?
“Bakonyi Bence is revealing moments for us by not saying anything about them,” Frank Márta Éva, a close friend of Bakonyi's says. “It is unsolvable what is going on in the pictures, where is the boundary between reality and fiction? The delicate absurdity of the moments of the photo-series Nameless is accompanied by ease that turns our attention from searching for explanations to the liberation of movements appearing in the photographs.”
The Budapest-based photographer has been taking photos since he was in school, eventually attending the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design and has since exhibited his photographs in Costa Rica, the Ukraine, and his home country of Hungary. In 2012 Bakonyi spent about 6 months in China, staying in both Shanghai and Hong Kong and during that time he worked on two of his most recent sets of photographs, Nameless and Transform.
Like Nameless, in which Bakonyi freezes time using a fast shutter-speed and flashgun, Transform leaves you with a sense that the image only lasted for a moment. The minute the person or Bakonyi holding the camera moves the continuous lines of the clothing and the background will be broken and the image lost.
“As a consequence of this, it liberates us,” Márta Éva continues. “Therefore we can consider the pictures as scrapes of dreams or as a mixture of surreal engrams; we do not have to find explanations regarding them. In the case of Nameless, the question is ‘How?’ instead of ‘What is happening?’”
We’re pleasantly puzzled, and we hope Bakonyi keeps on capturing moments like this. For more, see his site, and for further fine-art photography, take a look at Vitamin Ph, the definitive book on contemporary photography, featuring 121 international artists.