Fragmenting bodies, architecture and nature, Bjerre-Poulsen reinvents the forms around him as luminous images, creating intimate and enigmatic juxtapositions that invite the viewer to look again and imagine what lies beyond the frame.
The first monograph by Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen presents a striking collection of the Danish photographer’s cinematic compositions. Fragmenting bodies, architecture and nature, Bjerre-Poulsen reinvents the forms around him as luminous images, creating intimate and enigmatic juxtapositions that invite the viewer to look again and imagine what lies beyond the frame.
A trained architect, Bjerre-Poulsen brings to life his understanding of tactility, minimalism and detail by anchoring his still life series around a recurring motif of spherical shapes and through rendering each image in exquisite black and white tonalities.
Read below to find an excerpted conversation from The Reinvention of Forms between Jonas Bjerre-Poulsen and John Clifford Bruns.
Q — Why do spherical shapes interest you?
As a young student of architecture, I was working for a Danish modernist designer that was obsessed with the idea of the sphere and its perfect geometry. And then, I guess it’s like when you’re about to have a child and you suddenly see all the people with strollers and small babies, I just suddenly saw spherical elements everywhere. It went from something very physical and practical—something I implemented into design and architecture—to something that was broader, more philosophical. An image that could be used to understand life.
Q — How so?
Architects, designers and artists have always created variations of spherical structures and motifs that have stood out as iconic. It’s a timeless shape. But the sphere also appeals to people all over the world regardless of cultural preferences. It’s a strong symbol that defines the most intimate of spaces; the womb, relationships between people, and that between man and God. The philosopher Peter Sloterdijk also uses the sphere as a symbol of social and cultural spheres and describes how fragments of spheres interact in bubbles and foam.
Q — So, spheres are also a law of nature?
In nature, gravity and force make many things into spheres, such as bubbles, water droplets, the sun and atoms. The balance of spheres is what makes nature predictable and mathematical. Geometry is an abstract system of formalisation that makes sense to us—squares, triangles, circles. This understanding is incorporated into how we physically construct and mentally understand the world.
The Reinvention of Forms has an image on the front and back cover. You can turn the book both ways and have two different covers.
The book comes hand-packaged with a limited edition 32 x 24 cm. black/white print and is available in two colors: Grey and Sand.