Artist Suzana Stamenovic uses her love of black and white photography to create scenes that simplify reality. Visit her website to see more.
I was born in Belgrade, Serbia, where I began creating art as a child. I created my own comic books and developed photographs in my grandmother’s pantry.
My first black and white images came to life in the back of that kitchen, where the smell of homemade jams blended with the excitement of seeing pictures develop.
In 1991, when war broke out in the former Yugoslavia, I emigrated to Canada, where I studied art at Capilano University in Vancouver, British Columbia. After graduation, I immersed myself in a 16-year career as a computer game artist.
Then, photography re-emerged as my great love. In 2010 I became a full-time photographer and opened my own photography studio.
I strive to capture the feeling of space as an answer to my search for identity and belonging, which has always been an inspiration for my work. That space might be open or enclosed; it might be found in a person or an object.
Editing is where I am most creative. The silence and calm in my photographs result from a reductive process through which I remove noise and distraction. This allows viewers to safely and easily find their personal stories in my work.
My work ranges from street photography to studio conceptual work. I use a documentary approach when taking pictures in order to tell a story of my surroundings. In the “darkroom” is where my inner painter emerges.
I pause, step back, and focus on light and emotions rather than a specific narrative. This layered approach allows me to express a range of emotions in my work.
I draw inspiration from German expressionists, including Egon Shiller, Lucian Freud and (Swiss) Alberto Giacometti. The way that Expressionism avoids definition by a singular style and is best explained as an artist’s state of mind has always spoken to me.
The often abstract representation in my photographs reflects my love for black and white images, my background in graphic design, and my desire to simplify reality in order to create a space where my viewers can just be.