Armenian born photographer Bagrad Badalian moved to Belgium at the age of 9, evolving in an artistic environment since his early childhood. Influenced by his parents, who were both painters, the multidisciplinary artist quite naturally picked up photography as a medium of self-expression. Experimenting with long-exposure photography and multisaturated light effects, he creates dramatic visuals through the unusual distortion and manipulation of the human body. His beautiful, yet creepy and sometimes nightmarish images seem burdened in suffering, but maintain a hypnotic beauty that surrounds them. Bagrad’s photography resembles painting, a great concern for detail and a perfect sense of composition. It opens a path to our interrogations, our dreams and nightmares, it shatters our beliefs and stimulates our desires. For more of his images visit his website www.bagradbadalian.com and check out the interview below.
How would you describe yourself in one sentence?
I’m a polyvalent artist, I like to work on multiple things and allow myself to discover new mediums of expression whenever I can.
Whom do you look up to?
Who or what has been the biggest influence on your way of thinking?
There isn’t one person in particular, I have learned from artists such as Alejandro Jodorowsky, Andrei Tarkovski, Werner Herzog, David Lynch, Emir Kusturica, Moebius, Francis Bacon, Picasso, Zdislaw Beksinski, Connan Mockasin, Dr Dre, so many artists have thaught me to express myself freely.
How did your photographic career start?
I don’t think of myself as a photographer, I like the photographic technique, the possibility of capturing a moment that will dissapear but I focus much more on creating images than capturing them.
What was your favourite project and why?
Most of the projects that deal with the decomposition of movement and the hidden and unexpected forms and colors that they reveal. "Beyond" and "Insanity" are good examples.
How do you define creativity?
Creativity occurs when thoughts disappear, it is a dream that guides us and disappears once we awake to its presence.
If you had one advice for someone seeking to live a creative life, what would you tell him?
What's your personal motto?
I don’t have a motto but I got a strong drive.
What was the biggest challenge you’ve faced during your career as a photographer?
Doing commissionned works in general.
What do you know now that you wish you knew at 21?
I didn’t suspect time to fly so much faster over the years.
Is there anything for which you would be ready to give up your passion of photography?
I have many passions and I just jump from one thing to the other. If you don’t give in to something you’ll never have to give it up.
All images © Bagrad Badalian