“Creating a moment through the lens.” INTERVIEW with Inês d’Orey

As I already announced, here is the interview with young Portuguese photographer Inês d’Orey. I am happy that Inês found the time to answer some questions about her work – thanks Inês!! Her fascinating photo series Porto Interior can still be seen at Galleri Image, Aarhus (Denmark)until May, 10, 2009. So if you happen to hang around in Denmark – don’t miss the chance!


Fenianos 2 (from: Porto Interior), 80 x 80 cm, 2007 © Inês d'Orey

Fenianos 2 (from: Porto Interior), 80 x 80 cm, 2007 © Inês d’Orey

Inês, what can we see at Aarhus?

The exhibition Porto Interior in Galleri Image, presents a selection of 14 large format photographs, part of my ongoing project of  representing empty interiors of public and semi-public spaces in Porto, Portugal. The photographs are exhibited in conjunction with a video projection that incorporates sound recordings of people using the spaces in the photographs.

What is your intention with Porto Interior?

Porto Interior functions as a collection of spaces that I search and find throughout the city. These interiors are photographed absent of any human presence. Familiar places like theatres, swimming pools or staircases, used by people on a daily basis, become stages for a story that is never clear, but that doesn’t need to be clear.  Through digital manipulation, I alter  the photographs subtly until I create  the atmosphere I find appropriate.

Why photography? Why did you become a photographer?

Photography, because it provides the possibility of communicating from a physical and objective reality at the same time, with a subjective subtext underneath. And those two elements put together create a really interesting provocation.

What does art mean to you, which possibilities does it offer?

What is art?

Piscina de Campanhã (from: Porto Interior), 80 x 80 cm, 2007 © Inês d’Orey

How do you choose your motifs?

There isn’t a rule. I’m inspired everyday by different sources that, at a certain point, come together and result in an idea.

Who / What are your role models? Who / What influenced your work?

I never had any role models, specially in photography. My main influences come from cinema , painting and illustration.

In many projects, you focus on architecture, resp. rooms/interiors as well as “space” in general. Why? What does architecture / space mean to you?

Until I finished my degree in photography, I had never been particularly interested in architecture. But then, I started to work with an architecture photographer and was, in a way, „forced” to photograph space! That much delivery and exposure to architecture and being always surrounded by architects made me, slowly, start to acquire a special interest in it. And it reached the point of being, at the moment, my main interest.

What is it that you are interested in when portraying architecture/buildings and people?

The beauty of the form and light, the curiosity of the functionality, the misterious possibility of an unclear narrative.

The everyday usage of spaces tends to make them invisible, indiferent. The more you use the space, the more you ignore it. What photography does is, it selects, focuses your attention and tells you where to look.

Porto Interior, 80 x 80 cm, 2007 © Inês d’Orey

What are your ambitions with your photographs (esp. your “urban” works, but also in a broader point of view)?

I want to trigger the viewer’s imagination: what strange story is happening here? I like to think that the viewer will feel, more than rationalize the photograph.

What – in your opinion – is characteristical of your work and your working method?

I always plan and think through before I photograph. I never go out with my camera waiting for something to happen.

I think I could say that my work conceptually stages reality.  I’m more interested in “creating a moment”, more than “catching the moment”.

4 Responses to ““Creating a moment through the lens.” INTERVIEW with Inês d’Orey”

  1. geromimo

    Mai 01. 2009

    moments are not created through or by lenses. even artificial moments are not created in the real sense of the term. this is a misleading statement. moments pass by, we call this life or reality, what ever you like. the photographer does the freezing, sometimes very smart, touchy, emotional, sometimes with dynamic, sometimes by using a sort of simple symbol. creating a moment is wishthinking.

  2. Joan

    Mai 03. 2009

    Hi, interesting post. I have been pondering this issue,so thanks for writing. I will definitely be subscribing to your blog.


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