EDITION III WINNER
The winner for 2017, selected by acclaimed fine-art photographer Mona Kuhn, was Frederik Buyckx with his series ‘WOLF’. His series was presented at a solo exhibition at Matèria Gallery in Rome from 8 June to 4 July 2017, curated by Mona, Life Framer and Matèria Gallery owner Niccolò Fano.
Looking through the images of Frederik Buyckx, words such as magical, ethereal, and enigmatic spring to mind. Perhaps it is the way the Belgian photographer deftly renders the scenes before him in black and white, his touch subtle and light; or maybe it is the intrinsic beauty of the landscapes and the compositions he makes in and of these places. Surely it is all of these things, yet a second glance confirms what we already know: these images are ultimately indefinable, they exist in a realm of their own, and no matter how hard we try it is impossible to put a finger on what makes them so captivating.
But that is precisely the joy of such a body of work – one that delights in its mysteriousness. Motivated by a desire to immerse himself in nature and experience both its beauty and fearsome spirit first-hand, Buyckx journeyed across Europe, crossing paths with people and animals who live off the land. Allowing himself to be at one with the landscapes he encountered, in the way a wolf might, Buyckx embraced the inevitable loneliness that came his way, deliberately entering into uncomfortable situations so he could photograph what he was seeing and experiencing in the most real way possible.