Brain-bending Images

Self-taught Swedish photographer and retoucher Erik Johansson makes the implausible possible, turning outrageous scenarios into surreal yet familiar fragments of reality. His ongoing portfolio of photo manipulations sees landscapes unzip from the earth, human body parts shattered like porcelain, and buildings bent in half. Johansson describes his style as ‘photo realistic surrealism — surreal ideas realized in a realistic way with a touch of humor. I can’t really say that I’ve decided what I want my style to look like,’ he continues, but ‘it becomes what it becomes, I just realize the ideas that come to my mind and I don’t choose to develop a specific style to make that happen.’

Johansson’s recent compositions like ‘Impact’, ‘The architect’ and ‘Soundscapes’ continue his distortion of the natural world by morphing multiple images into one. For example, ‘Impact’ illustrates a lake, breaking apart into pieces of a mirror. the effect has been created through the use of 17 square meters of mirrors and a small boat, which has been carefully overlaid atop a photo of the surrounding landscape. ‘The architect’ is a brain-bending piece that plays with perspective and the distortion of space by forming an architectural optical illusion. Johansson documents much of his process in a series of videos, which you can see here.

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