close your eyes for a minute and imagine an extremely pretty ceramic figurine. now hold it up over your head. and drop it.
i’ll take a wild guess, this is where your eyes opened. right? i know. mine would.
german photographer – martin klimas does just that. just from a lot higher. in his series, aptly titled ‘porcelain figurines’, he takes porcelain statuettes up to a height of 4 metres and drops them. and the sound of the crash triggers his camera, to take the photographs. all using the beauty of high speed photography.
it all started in 2002, when martin started experimenting with cheap everyday objects like wine bottles and coffee cans. later graduating to vases. martin says, “everything i smash are cheap and mass produced. which makes sense because getting the right photograph requires a lot of repetition. the first models i bought were from asian supermarkets and then i used to import them directly from china.” he would also end up getting a lot of breakable objects as donations.
at first glance, it would seem that this would be such a colossal waste of good figurines but delve a bit deeper and you realise that by breaking these statuettes, they get immortalised in a photograph forever.
“the hardest part of my work is to smash so many figurines until i find one that truly is showing me something new. i am in that sense a sculptor, but i have only a 5000th of a second to build my sculpture,” he tells the morning news.
“it seems the figurine comes alive and was waiting for this moment all of its life”martin klimas
now that is quite an intriguing way to look at immortality. here are a few martin’s high speed photography masterpieces from his chinese figurine series. if you like his work, you can follow him on his website, on facebook or on instagram.