Underwater photography of scuba divers, coral, or wildlife can sometimes seem commonplace regardless of the remote destination or subject, but Indonesian photographer Hengki Koentjoro (previously here and here) bucks the trend with his desaturated, dark, and often brooding images taken in and around Jakarta, Indonesia. While his landscape photography above ground is often dreamlike and mysterious, as soon as the blue is removed from the ocean it introduces a slightly menacing tone that while deeply beautiful, sets the viewer a little on edge. Oh and also the sharks. Koentjoro is one of my favorite photographers right now and you should get lost in his photos for a bit. Find him on 500px, Flickr, and Art Limited. (via my amp goes to 11)
While on a backpacking trip through India two years ago, 23-year-old student Lukas Kozmus realized how much he enjoyed using his tiny Sony camera to photograph the Ganges river, the Taj Mahal and other sights. After returning he quickly purchased a better DSLR and took it with him on treks to visit the Himalayas in Nepal, to Indonesia, and of course carried it around his native Berlin, all the while snapping the wonderfully dreamlike images you see here. I think this could be a bit more than a hobby, no? Lukas tells me he’s preparing for a trip to Morocco and I can’t wait to see what he brings back. You can see more of his work on Flickr.
Photographer Taufik Sudjatnika has a wonderful series of photos over on 500px that capture the daily life of people living in rural Indonesia. Perhaps it’s the influence of growing up on farmland with an unreasonable hoard of ducks, chickens, and geese, but this is definitely my favorite.
Photographer Hengki Koentjoro (previously) was born in Semarang, Central Java, Indonesia in 1963 and later graduated the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California where he studied video production and minored in fine art photography. He now lives and works in Jakarta where he takes these breathless, surreal photographs of the Southeast Asian landscape in locations like Java and Banten. Via his artist statement:
Photography is not just a way of expressing his most inner soul but also creating a window to the world where through his pictures the unseen and the unspoken can be grasped. Driven by the desire to explore the mystical beauty of nature, he develops his sense and sensibility through the elements of fine art photography. His freedom of expression is more reflected in the elaboration and exploration of black and white.
When looking at Koentjoro’s images and processing technique I find myself unable to believe such profoundly beautiful places exist in reality. You can see much more of his work on Flickr and Behance. Prints are available by request.
One would assume at first glance that there is no other place Hengki Koentjoro could be taking photographs than a fantastical, alternate dimension, perhaps retrieving the photos nightly from his dreams. As it turns out these recent photos were taken in various places around Indonesia, and you can follow Koentjoro’s journies on Flickr.