In order for us, humans, to overcome our fears, we must inevitably face them. This is the life lesson that Evelyn Bencicova follows when it comes to her art. The young visual artist from Bratislava, Slovakia, fills her images with her own interpretation of one’s humanity, leaving the viewer with a staggering impression. Read as Evelyn unveils herself to us and let us have a peek into both her everyday life and a fantastic world, not so different from ours but still magnificent in every single aspect.
Why did you choose photography as your profession?
I never really made that choice, it just happened to become something that takes up most of my time. Even though I’ve been using a camera as my medium of choice for more than three years, I would not call myself a photographer. I’m more interested in the whole process of telling a story and creating new worlds on set.
You’re from Bratislava but currently based in Berlin. What made you trade one for the other?
I don’t have a permanent home or base actually. I travel every day for hours, either to my school, the University of Applied Arts in Vienna, or to other countries, for both business and pleasure. Berlin is one of my most frequent destinations. There is something very special about this city. It has a rare energy that attracts many fascinating people from all around the world.
The nudity you see in my pictures actually represents a form of humanity. Usually it has nothing to do with the usual sexual connotations that surround it. I’m not portraying the object of desire but the feeling or a certain situation. I’m seeing the nudity of my models as something natural instead of sensational.
Throughout your work I see that you’ve captured some of the most unique faces. Do you believe that concepts such as beauty should hold any real significance to art?
Beauty is a really complex concept that can have various interpretations, depending on who you ask. I’m working a lot with my own idea of beauty which might be different from most traditional views on this topic. I choose to look for beauty outside the norm. Most of my models are not professionals but they possess very interesting personalities.
Definitely but that’s not necessarily something negative to say. Any kind of challenge should be seen as a chance for personal and professional growth. For me it is really important that regardless of success or failure, a lesson can be taught in the process. With every project I’m trying to bring something innovative into my portfolio and that is why I keep on experimenting as much as I can. Of course, I always want my most recent work to also be the best but it doesn’t usually work that way. I’m still trying to come to terms with that but I do think it’s normal and again, a good way to motivate yourself.
Living versus Existing. Is it something that’s troubling you as an artist?
It also bothers me as a person. Many people forget just how limited life can be and what great importance it holds. In my pictures you can see a lot of emptiness because that is the thing that scares me the most. I don’t want to spend what life is left in me in a very basic way. I want to fill it with passion and intense moments. I need to believe that I have the power to change things, at least for myself. Always learn and never give up- is my basic motto which I hope to never forget along the way.
Your work is wildly anthropocentric and I can’t help but wonder, what fascinates you the most about human behaviour?
Maybe just how trivial it can be.
Most of your photographs, if not all, could easily be mistaken for stills from a movie that’s in the run for a, say, Palme d’Or. Have you ever considered going into cinematography?
That’s actually the next step I want to make. I’m already taking many videography classes while collaborating on various projects with other young visual artists such as Adam Csoka Keller, for example. I just love the whole idea of movement in my projects.
Your preference for cold, grey-ish colours is easily noticed. Do they represent something in particular?
It’s true that I prefer cold colours and very sterile environments. These two elements help me place people in a very surreal world that falls between the realms of fantasy and everyday reality. That is how I choose to express my vision. This is my world.
I keep a very open mind towards anything progressive and I’m planning to educate myself more in this field. I have a deep appreciation for digital art and I consider the part of post-production to be equally important with everything else involved in the creative process.
What should we expect from you soon?
At the moment I’m working on several new projects, mostly collaborations but I don’t like giving away too much. Everything will be revealed soon.
As featured in Chasseur issue #11 – YOURS WAS THE BODY (AW15)
Self portrait exclusively shot for CHASSEUR in Vienna by Evelyn Bencicova