Surreal Photography With Robert John - LDN REiMAGINED

Robert John has just launched his LDN REiMAGINED exhibition in the Zari Gallery and Stuart Fawcett went along to see the images first hand and to have a quick chat with the man behind the lens.

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Robert John


Robert John has a unique view of London, a view born out of his Father's experience with Parkinson's Dementia relating how he saw, smelt and touched things that were not visible to anyone else. 

 

Tower Bridge

 

Robert John's dark and imaginative story starts in the times of old when giants roamed the land and cared for people. But as the giant’s time passed, they, in one last act of compassion for humans, left us their bones to build cities and homes for ourselves. If you look closely today at certain buildings you will see these gifts melded into the fabric of our buildings. Take a close look at Tower Bridge through the right eyes, for example, and you may well see the supporting bones that actually hold the bridge up.

Or, if you stand on Primrose Hill, and look carefully through the day, into the night and you might just see Tritons transformation; using a beam to seek out those who are in need.

 

Iron Giant

Iron Giant II © ROBERT JOHN

 

The beauty of this image is not that it's a single image processed by a Photoshop master, but instead, it's six hours' worth of tripod-mounted images taken at progressive times of the day such that the final image might include actual light from that whole time. The beam of light is not a layer mask of adjusted exposure, it’s the actual light from that day preserved in the final image, alongside light from the evening. Robert John does add artefacts such as Titan, but the image is a pure image of actual real content that existed at that place. This is the surreal mastery of this exhibition, it's almost outside of time, as time itself exists within the images themselves. Each image has a story and shows much more than you will first see. Some images even have reflections of others.

 

Robert John's exhibition


Robert asks us to stand still, question the world we see around us and think from a fresh unfettered perspective about what we see, smell and touch. Let your inner child's imagination run free and find a new perception of reality. He sees flowers in streetlamps and jets launching off Vauxhall station in his alternate version of London. This project is both his connection to his Father and his escapism from the real world in its current form.

Robert has been developing this project idea for years now and this is the 3rd year that it will be showcased publicly; each year is all new work and this one particularly has amazing images, freshly shot on Olympus E-PL8 or OMD bodies which he likes as they are small enough to carry around with him in his normal life.

This year, to celebrate his work, Unicorn publishing has produced a lovely looking big thick 176 page hardback of Robert John's images called "LDN Reimagined: A Surreal Visual Journey that will Change your Perception of London". It's stuffed full of images and descriptions to help you discover new ideas and fresh ways of looking at the world. When developing the ideas, sketches and models all help contribute to the final image, which, are all individual pieces of art. As you start to empathise and imagine ideas yourself you may well feel the hairs on the back of your neck start to stand up as you enter your own version of Rober'ts world.

 

Robert John's exhibition

 

This exhibition is very well supported by Zari Gallery owner Georgina Dhillon, Lucy Duckworth Director of Unicorn Publishing, Of course, Robert John, Georgina Pavelin Olympus' Marketing Manager and Kimneeta Larizadeh the Gallery Director.

To see more of Robert John's work, visit his website - What I See When and you can find more information on the exhibition via the Zari Gallery website. The book can be purchased via Amazon UK

Words and pictures, unless stated, by Stuart Fawcett (JackAllTog)

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