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Riccardo Magherini photographs of Bangkok

One of my earliest memories from my first trip to Bangkok was just how busy the place was.

Bustling, chaotic, noisy… and just an absolute blur of scenes, stories and sounds that merged into one big, hot city.

These pictures from Italian photographer Riccardo Magherini seemed to capture part of that spirit.

They show shots from Bangkok that are merged and imposed o top of each other to give a strangely comforting feel of stillness and silence amidst the hectic day-to-day living.

And that’s the strange juxtaposition of Thai people’s lives – as a whole the city of Bangkok is so chaotic, but individually their lives are still and relaxed.

Enjoy the pictures from Riccardo… and read our interview with him.

 

What inspired you to take street photographs?

The curiosity, the desire to play, with the complicity of a trip to Tokyo. Street is dense, unpredictable, populated of life, is a perfect playground for eagerness.

How did you come up with the idea to create the layered images?

I’ve began doing authorial photography in 2011, after a trip to Tokyo. The pictures I took there became the bases for the very first series, “Tokyo”.There, in Tokyo, during that trip, for the very first time I experienced a beautiful strong feeling of estrangement. I was surrounded by an amazing brand new world and the ‘one shot street photography’ approach wasn’t able to tell about it. So I started to take picture all around the things, collecting images all around the moments I wanted to talk about it.

Then shots was composed and merged, ‘shaped’ to tell that stories, suggesting the feeling of that moment or, in some cases, a memory of it. I found that works intriguing… the way time overlaps in the same place and the look that images had, pushed me deeper in that imaginarium.

How long does it take to produce one? And how many different shots are involved?

Days of postproduction are the basis for that kind of images and number of layer could variate from ten to thirty.

It’s an evolving process. During time, since the first series to the last one, my point of view has changed and the method with it. BKK is the most recent work of a series centered on the cities, from Tokyo to Hong Kong, passing through Lisbon, Florence and NYC Over time I’ve become more and more passionate of big cities.

 

The hugeness of course and the mood, the vibration, the smell and the noise, all this things that metropolises have are captivating for me. And the asian ones particularly, they give me that precious sense of estrangement that make me feel ‘not at home’.

The BKK series talks much more about people than the other series like ‘HK’ or ‘Firenze’, more centered on the urban’s structure. I think that’s because of the unique feeling I had with Thai people. I’ve chosen to made base camp in Talat Noi, one of the most popular and ancient part of Bangkok’s Chinatown, full of mechanical workshop, food stalls and street rusty second-hand car engines stack.

A dense neighborhood, noisy and smoky, alive. It was the right choice.

What is the feedback like from people who see the pictures?

People who like my works are mostly captivated by the pictorial look and the multilevel structure, that allow them to explore and play with the details, stories and the street life they find, layer beneath layer.

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