on landscape The online magazine for landscape photographers

Oriental Philosophy & Photography

Mystery is the fuel of both art and philosophy

Rafael Rojas

Following a career as an engineer, researcher and university lecturer he made a dramatic change of career as a nature and landscape photographer, his true passion and vocation. Today, he travels extensively in search of those fleeting moments when light and land combine to create something very special. His work has been awarded in many international photography competitions, including the prestigious Master Hasselblad Award, several First Prizes in the International Photography Awards (USA), Px3 Prix de la Photographie de Paris and Px3 People's Choice (France), Nature’s Best (USA), International Conservation Awards (USA),

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Introduction

Art and philosophy are tightly intertwined. Contrary to science, where we try to find answers to questions, art and philosophy look for more questions. Finding the answers to these questions might be a welcome result, but the importance is the questioning process itself rather than the answers. Mystery is the fuel of both art and philosophy.

It is no surprise that many of the masters of photography have had an abiding penchant for philosophy. Wynn Bullock asked the deepest questions about life and the universe and used photography as a symbolic language to further, as well as document, his search for meaning. Minor White brought the concept of using the self as a guide, placing an emphasis on the spiritual and metaphysical relationship between subject and photographer. Alfred Stieglitz coined the concept of "equivalents", visual metaphors where the subject matter is freed from literal interpretation and can become the mirror of a personal stage of being. These artists frequently used philosophy as the subject and fuel for their explorations, which were carried out visually by means of photography. Photography for them was the tool through which they could explore and share with their audience the philosophical concepts which haunted them. 



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