Anna Camps photography, urban portraits in the liquid society
Anna Camps is a brilliant street photographer living in Barcelona, Spain. Her keen eye for the urban setting and her special touch of empathy allows her to express her artistic sensitivity in the relationship between urban environment and humanity which she captures in her charming photographs. StreetPhoto is the name of her latest photographic series, investigating individuals in the contemporary society.
by Luigi Coluccia
My today’s article is meant to be a tribute to a very dear author, Anna Camps. Together with Alessandra, when we first thought and then gave birth to the ArchiMinimal project, we agreed on a keyword on which we intended to build this new reality. This word should have been “contamination”, out of doubts. That word is the one that best represents the aim we had, that capability to evolve by exchanging different visions, stimulating each one to go far beyond any attended expectations.
Anna’s photography undoubtedly has represented to me one of the most exciting and fruitful contaminations from an artistic point of view. The immediacy of the message being conveyed, the purity of the lines, the accurate composition always studied in the slightest detail, the ability to capture the close relationship between urban space and humans, the effective blend of lights and shadows that coexist and alternate in her compositions, these are only some of the main characteristic of her recognizable photographic style.
Anna is an urban architect who lives and works in Barcelona. His photographs clearly show the relationship between the rationality of architecture and the human interaction with it that is placed at the heart of the urban environment, she aims at representing. Her family has been able to nurture her creative and technical sensitivity, not only related to photography. Her artistic sensitivity for painting, poetry and music comes from her grandparents, while her techinical aptitude belongs to her father engineer.
This familiar influence has probably led her to approach life and work, playing between art and technique.
“I have always been fascinated by photography and in my work it is an essential tool, a complementary vehicle helping me in the representation of the architectural elements, but my approach to photography has radically changed four years ago when I realized that photography could be also a vehicle to express my personal creativity and I started to publish my images by sharing them with people of my own interests and my own feelings. “ – says Anna on her relationship with photography.
Each shot is a short story, which is part of a larger project represented by the indissoluble relationship between humans and urban architecture. In fact, urbanization is one of the most obvious phenomena of modern times and has led to profound changes in society. A city is a relatively large, dense and permanent settlement of heterogeneous individuals. It is precisely on these aspects that Anna puts her attention, attempting to deepen the relationship between people and the surrounding environment in modern society. People moving fast from one side of the city to the other, using public transport rather than walking on the sides of the streets, are protagonist of these organized spaces, without being ever conscious of what is the true essence of their life, often being the unaware victims of massification.
Her photographs bring me back to the principle of the Spanish urbanist ldefons Cerda del Sunyer. He conceives the city as a living organism based on two main criteria: the first is related to the concept of urbanization, resulting from the adaptation of the “containing” to the “content“. The former relates to the city while the latter to people actually living – filling up – the city. The second criterion refers to the fact that the adaptation process has to follow the human needs. According to Cerda infact all the elements of the urban environment can find their proper order, starting from the dichotomy “stasis-movement“. This fundamental dichotomy can give shape to a first breakdown of space. Movement can take place in the relationship to space while stasis occurs in a condition of protection or isolation. The city is then defined as an inhabited environment in the great universal system, a privileged moment of relationship between human and space. In this scenario movement becomes social relationship and stasis the individual comfort zone.
In her StreetPhoto photo series – available on Anna’s Instagram profile, entirely dedicated to this project – humans are always there. They are well integrated in the architectural, geometric context, animating it, as they were functional to one another, almost symbiotic. Her urban vision is mainly characterized by linear and clear composition, accurate line management and charming scenes and compositions. Anna has a keen eye to urban scenes and that special touch of empathy which allows her to describe the tight relationship between people and surrounding urban environment.
Often overwhelming, vivid and meaningful, her images are the mirror of contemporary society. Blurred subjects moving in very well defined spaces, amorphous figures, almost feeling lost in the surrounding architecture which they try to get rid of. This is a project that has particularly impressed me and which in my opinion deserves special attention because it is the result of an artistic evolution path, outlining a certain artistic maturity, acquired by studying and investigation and combined with a fervent creativity and a fascinating personality and sensitivity.