7 Bulgarian photographers to follow

Eray Birolov’s breath taking black and white photographs explore the individual enunciations of solitude. The Bulgarian-born filmmaker and photographer is often gazing at loneliness not simply as an emotional state, but as a permanent situation unfolding the lives of people. Birolov’s interest in the uncontrollable circumstances that provoke solitude – he is not aiming to present it as a negative experience, but rather exploring the complex and constructive nature of it.

Through her work Mia Novakova captures the post-Soviet leftovers merged with the new consumerism culture of Bulgaria and particularly her hometown Plovdiv. Using surreal and saturated colours she creates dreamy and illusionary landscapes, focusing on architecture, self-portrait, neon lights, silhouettes and glimpses of the everyday life. Working with expired film adds to the layers of dystopia and science-fiction which emerges from her photographs.

University of Westminster graduate, Poleta Ianeva explores her constant need to capture dance. Ianeva begins to experiment with photography and performance, including dance in the everyday life, in the home and through the mundane rituals and actions. The performance breaks the boundaries of home and routines, changing the landscape of the spaces in which it occurs.

Lubov Cheresh was born in Moldova and moved to Bulgaria with her family when she was very young, where she is currently based. Merging her design ideas with the medium of photography helps Cheresh push the boundaries of performance, while aiming to inform the viewer for various global problems. In her series, The Mother Plastic the photographer investigates issues in relation to environmental pollution. After spending some time on a beach on the seaside of Bulgaria, Cheresh found a piece of nylon under the beige sand and attempted to clean it. Which led to the discovery of meters long nylon spread underneath the beach, using this found material she created a series of hazy portraits.

Plamen Yankov was born in Bulgarian and studied in Dresden, Germany. In his project ‘’ ‘’ he has created a typological exploration of the variety of popular foods he consumes. Looking back at his past eating habits and present ones, he starts to perceive these foods as a DNA sequences. Presenting the images in such grids also aims to reference the formation of the double DNA chain. This body of work also begins to provoke a dialogue with the viewer on how traditions and anchored and coded within one self.

Focusing on the capital of Bulgaria – Sofia, the documentary photographer Rossen Kuzmanov continues to add more elements to his ongoing project Sofia, Mirrors and Windwos. Working with a black and white film, Kuzmanov records the urban spaces, crossroads and aims to find the beauty within the mundane city life. Looking through shop windows or using the reflections of mirrors, he captures the streets of the capital from a new perspective.

Alexander Stanishev is a Bulgarian cinematographer with an extensive career working in the film, music and advertisement industry. He has also turned his creativity towards photography, capturing melancholy, loneliness, dark humour and the absurd. His images work as a continuation of his filmmaking, aiming to create a narrative within each one of them. Using photography as therapy, escaping from the everyday life and problems, he captures the moments of depression and melancholy, where he also finds true beauty.

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