Niemeyer’s Brasilia by Andrew Prokos


National Museum of Brasilia at Dusk

“Niemeyer’s Brasilia” is a series of photos conceived when I was visiting Brasilia for the first time in 2012. I was fascinated by Brasilia, which at once seems futuristic and trapped in time.

The entire city was shaped by the works of architect Oscar Niemeyer. His presence is felt in every corner of the city, from the spectacular Cathedral of Brasilia to the more intimate chapels and monuments. Niemeyer had unprecedented influence over the design of the city from its inception untilhis recent death in 2012, a span that lasted over 50 years in total. In no other place in the world has one architect had so much influence, and that was a great part of my fascination with his buildings. Although this series has been especially popular with architects and architectural publications I really conceived of the series as fine art photography.

Niemeyer was as much artist as architect and the sensuous curves of his buildings reflect that. His buildings have been documented countless times by countless architectural photographers, so documentary photography was not really what I was after. My goal is generally to distill the essence of what is unique about a place, or a building, or a series of buildings. To objectify them and make them seductive to the viewer. I shoot at night because I think that the subjects are often more beautiful or more interesting at night. The night tends to drown out background noise and focus the viewer’s eye on what you want them to see. Long exposures heighten the sense of unreality…and hence the photos have been described as “surreal”. In that respect they are a slight departure from the already surreal reality of Niemeyer’s architecture and Brasilia as a city. [Official Website]

Praça Duque de Caxias at Night, Brasilia Palacio do Itamaraty at Night, Brasilia Cathedral of Brasilia at Night View of the Palacio do Planalto at night, Brasilia, Brazil Congresso Nacional at Dusk , Brasilia 1-NIEMEYERS-BRASILIA-PROKOS-9180-1000PX-C

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