Photography / Rising Photographers

Five photographers embracing the darkness

Obscure figures, gothic glamour, painful pleasures.

So many of our favourite visuals explore the darker side of life. Forget Instagram’s pastel obsession, a new movement of photographers are playing in the shadows, going to deep and mysterious places to create beautiful nightmares. From extreme hedonism in Berlin, to sinister surrealism in Bogotá – here are our favourite photographers with a noir aesthetic.

Maxime Ballesteros

Playing with hedonism, anonymity and masochistic fantasy, Maxime Ballesteros photos occupy a space that is part nightmare and part fantasy. The French photographer – now based in Berlin, has an uncanny ability to create images that evoke a sinister narrative beyond the frame.

A precariously placed stiletto, a trail of blood that’s somehow glamorous– it’s a vision that intrigues and repels, capturing our most primal instincts.

Santiago Sepúlveda

Santiago Sepúlveda is a Bogotá based photographer who focuses his lens on the shadowy immateriality of reality.

His photographs are driven by his own personal perception of his subject that stems from beneath the skin, a person’s aura rather than a preconceived concept or theme. Darkness, malice and humanity pierce through each frame – evoking a fictional underworld.

Agustin Hernandez

Step into a surreal world of domestic madness via Agustin Hernandez’s visuals.  Bringing to life the most decadent, twisted and intriguing house party you could ever imagine – the Portland based film photographer marries the beautiful with the bizarre.

Pearls in the sink, a surreal floral-filled bath and a deluge of tinsel – you’re not quite sure whether it’s an exquisite dream sequence or the aftermath of a crime scene.

Elizaveta Porodina

Elizaveta Porodina is Russian fashion photographer, living in Munich. Entirely self-taught, her work is darkly cinematic.

Before working for the likes of Philipp Plein and Louis Vuitton, Elizaveta was a clinical psychologist treating patients in psychiatry, her unique background influencing her layered, experimental approach to fashion photography which recalls Helmut Newton, Richard Avedon and Irving Penn.

Gonzalo Bénard

After spending three days in a coma, Gonzalo Bénard took a life changing decision to travel to the Western Sahara and study shamanism. This experience inspired the creation of ‘Hybrids’ a beautifully shot series exploring our connections to animals.

Arresting and deeply moving, Gonzalo’s photographs are suggestive of our power to shapeshift and recreate our selves according to the power of our beliefs.

28 October 2019