AsiaB&WBioDesert : Shadows of silence by Basim Ghomorlou

The aesthetics of desert nature in black and white delivers universal feelings. Feelings that a photograph in color washes out: roaring hush, violent calm, muted screams.

The aesthetics of desert nature in black and white delivers universal feelings. Feelings that a photograph in color washes out: roaring hush, violent calm, muted screams.

The desert is dominated by an intense, deep, all-consuming silence. It is constantly wrestling with existential dichotomies: life and death, drought and humidity, heat and cold, light and darkness. It seduces with its softness and its force lacks any romance. What we see is raw, pure and sensual. It is filled with sadness, fright, and delight. Reflections that resonate with every human being’s essence.

Simultaneously, each human translates this visual poetry into a unique singular introspective understanding of being. The longer we contemplate the planes and ridges in these frames, the more is our subconscious inclined to invite us into the poesy of existence. The magic happens when the perception ceases to “see” the sand hills and commences into a journey of deconstruction and rearrangement of the visual stimuli. In this limbo is where we find reflections of our respective unique state of mind. 

To this day, it is 10 years that I regularly travel to and in the Iranian deserts. Each year that I return to the Kavir Desert, I depart far from oases and desert villages into its heart to devour its silent suspense. One result of these retreats is this ongoing project “Shadows of Silence”. 

Another ongoing project that compliments “Shadows of Silence” deals with the relationship between desert nature and its inhabitants. In these photographs, I observe how the unforgiving environment inscribes its poetry into the character and culture of the local people.

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

About Basim Ghomorlou

Basim Ghomorlou, born in 1984, is an Iranian photographer who focuses on Nature and Social Documentary. His dominantly back and white photographs include digital work; however, his specialty is analog photography.

Since 2000 he has traveled Iran’s nature, urban and rural areas to capture a country in transition. His work was shown in solo exhibitions in the Iranian Artists’ Forum (Khane Honarmandan) Tehran, the Isfahan Museum of Contemporary Art and galleries around the country. In 2011 he was the first photographer to organize a photo exhibition in a remote village in Khorasan, where he has taken photographs regularly for ten years.

In 2016 he moved to Germany and continues his projects in Europe. He exhibited his works in Brussels, Strasbourg, Venice, and Bonn among other places. In 2019 he was finalist at the „Photographer of the Year“ contest of National Geographic Germany.

His work has been honored by IPA Awards, ND Awards, Monovisions Awards, „100Years of Analog Photography“ Awards and Glanzlichter Awards among others. Basim Ghomorlou is a member of the National Iranian Photographers’ Society and Khorasan Photographers’ Society. [Official Website]

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou

Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou
Shadows of silence | Basim Ghomorlou



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