Impossible Structures by Victor Enrich/ Art Image : Victor Enrich
We chat to Spanish photographer Victor Enrich, who takes architectural city photographs and manipulates them to create impossible structures.
Architecture, as a form of interaction with space, has been around me since I was a child. It was not the only subject that interested me, different forms of engineering were also quite exciting.
You were born and raised in Barcelona. Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your background?
I was born in Barcelona, in 1976.
Since I was a child I was mostly dedicated to playing with three dimensional games, such as Lego. As I grew up, the games changed into something more technical. In my teenage years, I ended up designing imaginary cities on paper. Then came college, I studied architecture but I dropped out in my 5th year because of an increasing demand of 3D rendering services that I was getting from architects. This activity became my main focus for 10 years, from 1997 until 2007, during which time I created a small company with up to 20 employees at its peak, in 2006. After such experience in business I decided to shut it down and begin with art, an exciting journey that has reached 9 years already.
Your background is architecture. How does this interest in architecture inspire your work? When did you discover your passion for 3D architectural visualization?
Architecture, as a form of interaction with space, has been around me since I was a child. It was not the only subject that interested me, different forms of engineering were also quite exciting. My grandfather was a construction worker, and I loved to analyse the technical drawings that he brought home from his job from time to time. That made me decide to do architecture instead of any other technical subject. As years passed, my passion moved towards urbanism rather than strict architecture. I’m crazy about cities and their developments, geometry and functionality.
I discovered very rudimentary 3D visualization by the age of 14, back in 1990. It was very basic, due to the limited power of computers and software at that time.
You are self-taught in digital photography and 3D rendering. What prompted you to teach yourself these skills? Has learning these skills let you push your creativity to the max?
I learned everything I know by working professionally between 1997 and 2007. I used to work on more than 40 projects a year, almost one per week, for several clients. This made me meet all sort of technical situations that I had to solve in order to reach the deadlines in good conditions. In the end, it all became an excellent (and paid) training for what I’m doing now. However, since I work on my own projects, I have more opportunities to research further in the field of 3D visualization. Thus, my skills have improved a lot.
Digital art is a relatively new form of art, this means that there’s a lot of experimentation around, compared to other well established genres.
Do you have any tips for those looking to move into digital art?
Well, digital art is a relatively new form of art, this means that there’s a lot of experimentation around, compared to other well established genres. However, this also means that it takes a lot of work, not only at your desk, but out of your studio too, to make one’s art reach the appropriate environment that enables acquiring more visibility and, perhaps, being purchased by collectors. However, since there aren’t any generic rules to follow to be successful in art, I believe that every artist should follow their own path according to their own experience for the sake of finding their own style.
When I decide to modify a building, first of all, I’m manifesting an admiration for that building.
You are fascinated with ‘the city’ and the process of adding and changing urban spaces for different human needs. What started this fascination?
I’m a person that spends most of the time imagining things. If not managed correctly, this condition may lead to situations of total disconnection with the real world. Since this condition is strong in me and it will hardly change or calm down, I decided to take advantage of it and use it to reconnect myself back with the world from which I got disconnected from due to an excess of that same imagination.
Your imagery is created from altering understood shapes of urban buildings into new and interesting forms. When did you come up with your idea to manipulate images of buildings to create these truly unique photographs? What was the inspiration behind modifying normal urban forms into something new?
I guess it simply came out after a rational process of analysing my available resources.
After 10 years of working in business I was very disappointed, because I had totally disconnected with my own imagination, that same one that I was enjoying in my childhood years. On the other hand I realized that I had developed a very professional set of skills that would let me make almost anything that could come to my mind.
The conditions were ideal to begin research into an activity that should be exclusively tailored by me and for me.
When I decide to modify a building, first of all, I’m manifesting an admiration for that building. Perhaps for its role in the city, or for its architectonic details, or for its overall shape. The admiration leads to a process in which I begin to draw that building to the extent of reaching the most insignificant details, something that makes me live together with that building for some time. By drawing it I begin to feel some sort of restrictions that that building has got to suffer due to its own design, so I believe that, from some sort of sense of solidarity towards it, I release it from those restrictions and let it express itself in order to help it redefine its role in the city, and in society.
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