Urban Photography as Salvation of the Soul: Dubai and Hong Kong Through the Lens of Apo Gench

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What does the word “city” mean to you? For some, a city is a career, success, and achievements. For the second, a comfortable life with constant modernization of living conditions. For the third, it is a necessary measure, but I myself want to quickly escape to nature in my only two free days. But for the Turkish photographer Apo Genç, the city seems to be a refuge. From what? Read about Gench’s creative approach to photography and incredible series about Dubai and Hong Kong.

The talented urban photographer Apo Genc was born in 1983 in Turkey and grew up in Germany, where he studied at the Christian Albrecht University of Kiel for an MA in contemporary German literature, psychology and sociology. Apo became interested in photography in 2008 while studying, as he was fascinated and inspired by everything he studied in the class: “Being the type of visual perception since childhood, I then thought that I want to try to build my own visual worlds.” And already in 2013, Gench took up video filming on a professional level as an employee of a video company in Kiel.

“Inspiration is the main source of motivation for me personally. Yes, I realized my passion for photography, which soon became an important part of my personality. Part, without which I could not and cannot imagine my life, because in photography I see a tool for expressing my emotions, thoughts and everything else that is in me. This method, in my opinion, is sometimes more direct and unambiguous than ordinary language, ”Apo tells”.

So what inspires a Turkish photographer? Gench answers: everything that surrounds him. Here Apo quoted Jim Jarmusch: “Nothing is original. Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Absorb old movies, new movies, music, books, paintings, photographs, poetry, dreams, casual conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, lights and shadows. Select only those things that can be stolen and that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work (and theft) will be genuine. Authenticity is priceless; originality does not exist. And don’t bother to hide your theft — celebrate it if you so desire. In any case, always remember what Jean-Luc Godard said: “This is not about where you get something from, but about howwhere”.

Following what Jim Jarmusch said, Apo does not believe in any particular photography styles. Its goal is development.

“It would be sad if I did all the same for the next 40 years. Now I love the colorful city photography that captures the spirit of the place in its shape and special light. But this may change in the coming years, ”concludes Apo.

Talking about his urban series on Dubai and Hong Kong, Dimensions of Urban Aesthetics, Apo says he never felt the salvation of the soul in nature. On the contrary, only cities attracted him. Gench often wondered what draws him to these huge insane “monsters”, of which so often so many flee on their weekends? The answer is dreaminess. Yes, Apo does not hide that he still dreams that he often catches himself floating away, imagining a similar world, consisting of the “ingredients” chosen by him, in which Gench mentally finds refuge for himself. And this is a city with perfectly constructed buildings that form an optical symbiosis that turns out to be even more beautiful.

“Day. Dusk. Night. Silence. Water. Passing clouds. Atmosphere. Light and shadow. Luminescent colors and night lights help breathe soul into this ensemble. And I am standing right in the middle of this madness.”

In 2012, motivated by the desire to look beyond the “backyards” of the cities of Kiel and Istanbul, as well as in search of new inspiration, Apo went on a trip to Hong Kong and Dubai:

“My inner decision to visit these cities did not disappoint me. What I stumbled upon was not only breathtaking, but terrifying, for example, standing in front of a giant called Burj Kalifa.”

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Website: https://www.apogenc.de/
Behance: https://www.behance.net/gencabdullah
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/abdullah.apo.genc/

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