The hidden side of politics

Photographs of Buildings That Become Abstract Art

Reported by WIRED:

During the week, Nikola Olic spends his time building user interfaces as a software designer in Dallas. On weekends and vacations, though, he applies his systematic rigor to a very different pastime: taking pictures of buildings.

“I like clean lines, minimalism, simplicity,” Olic explains. “And that expands into photography.”

Although the Serbian-born Olic has always had a passion for taking photographs, it wasn’t until 2013 that he had the epiphany that would lead him to what has become his signature style. While crossing the Brooklyn Bridge in New York he was mesmerized by the view of Frank Gehry’s silver, 76-story apartment building in lower Manhattan. “I was just staring at it, going ‘What do I do with that kind of building?,'” Olic recalls. “It’s made to be beautiful and weird and just screams out for attention, but how do I photograph it?”

Olic settled on a tightly-cropped image of the building’s rippling metallic façade, emphasizing the texture of the building. The photo became a template for all of Olic’s subsequent photography, which treats architecture as context-less two-dimensional abstract art. He often juxtaposes several skyscrapers, visually collapsing their distance to create a single, collage-like view. Sometimes these juxtapositions are humorous, as when Olic made Las Vegas’ Wynn Hotel resemble a melted chocolate bar, or when he made a downtown Dallas bridge look like it’s playing tennis with the moon.

Despite the photos’ carefully composed appearance, Olic works without a tripod, guerrilla style, shooting hundreds of photographs a day with his trusty Nikon D700. Only once he returns from a trip will he review his shots on a computer and select the one or two he will ultimately preserve. By meticulously cropping the original image (while preserving its dimensions), Olic produces photographs that are computer-like in their precision.

As if to prove he really took the photograph, each image on Olic’s website is accompanied by a link to the Google Map location where he shot it. “It’s a way of saying, ‘Here’s my take on this building, this city,'” he says. The result is a series of images that make people see familiar skyscrapers in an entirely new way.

“In Dallas,” he says, “I’ve had people say, ‘I walk by this building every day, and I’ve always thought of it as ugly.'”

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