Why I love Viviane Sassen


The Dutch born artist and photographer is undoubtedly conquering the world with her abstract approach towards photography,surreal perspectives and creating an impossible image of fashion and nature by using sudden and unexpected explosion of paint or contrast,distorted shapes of the human figure and unique way of experimenting with today’s fashion,”For me it’s important that images somehow confuse me or disturb me or gasp me for a long time” she told Dazed last year,talking about her unconventional approach to an industry considered ‘superficial’ her take on fashion is the same how she experiments with arty photography and other surreal projects massively influenced from Africa where she spent most of her time growing up,There are endless reasons to love her works as they not only look strange and beautiful,but there is something in the images that directly speaks to my soul and inspires me immensely.

According to Sassen Fashion is one playground,a place to experiment and her photography proves and aims to mess with the viewers preconceptions about what fashion photography really is their mind,Fashion taking a secondary role to her powerful imagination,her innate sense of image making-both confusing and hypnotizing you simultaneously.

“I didn’t feel like I belonged in Europe, and yet I knew I was a foreigner in Africa”

her projects including UMBRA are one a kind as UMBRA delves into the world of shadows. A darkness that is seductive and deceptive. A darkness that lies in every human soul, as a still black lake with a surface flat as a mirror that can not be but shattered.UMBRA is naturally, also the story of light, from its blinding qualities to its brittle brightness. The ever conflicting pull of light and darkness kicked off the quest for imagery of what can not be contained: a world continuously in motion, the mind unable to decide which direction to take. Shadow, eventually, as a force of life, and not only the negation of light.

I have not yet discovered an artist like Sassen,her playfulness with colors and photo journals that reflect honesty and the deep dark reality of today’s world,I love Sassen and her recent project ‘pinkin slee’ comes across as intriguing to a completely different level,turning everyday objects into something extraordinary and beautiful as you may witness while you see the images below.

Largely shot in black and white, the informal photos also capture a sense of Sassen’s personal connection to the village, which is inhabited by the ancestors of former slaves who escaped Dutch rule.

“This project is an exploration of the beauty of the everyday,” writes Sassen in her introduction, “an investigation of the sculptural qualities of the ordinary.”

parasomnia and flamboya are the other two equally loved projects by Sassen I’m a fan of,parasomnia explores the mindset of people who find it difficult to sleep at night perfectly shown through absurd and strange behavior,abstract poses and expressions,it’s a reflection of one’s mind and soul,this photo series inspired from the sleeping disorder hypnotizes the viewers by it’s strange movements and saturated color schemes-I believe only a true genius can create something so beautiful and crude at the same time.,and this is simply why I love her.

all images are taken from and by Viviane Sassen website.


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