The landscapes of photographer Martin Vlach emanate a mysterious and melancholic energy. Characterized by ghostly human figures silhouetted against an impenetrable mist, it is like witnessing somebody’s passage into the afterlife; with their backs turned and postures calm, the stoic, nameless people seem to be on the edge of something, hesitating between worlds, gazing into that all-engulfing void beyond which we — the dreaming bystanders — are not permitted to see. As you will notice, Vlach has seamlessly blended surrealist imagery into his photography: whales emerge from the fog, and bodies plummet from the clouds. These surprising elements enhance the series’ theme of liminality and otherworldliness, merging reality with an intangible, heart-wrenching dream.
What makes Vlach’s work so consistently engrossing is the atmosphere. His images are landscapes of emotion and sensorial experience; by empathizing with the distant figures, you can taste the chilled mist in your lungs, smell the rain-wet earth and sea, feel the grass and sand shift beneath you as you traverse the lonely terrain. There is a sense of movement and stillness, solitude and comfort. With the contours of the “real” world obscured in the fog, Vlach creates immersive landscapes that foster our own deeply personal interpretations and emotional engagements.