Today’s photographer of the day is 25-year-old Christopher Lucka from Brooklyn, New York. For Christopher, photography is a way for him to express himself. He always wanted to work visually and show the metaphors that run underneath the layers of this world. He was mentioned in a previous Resource article about the winners of the EyeTime 2014 contest, an annual photo contest derived from the Morpholio Project. With this, he won the emerging talent public winner Eyetime 2014 award.
Lucka doesn’t see photography as an objective medium. If he can, he wants to shine new light on what we sometimes judge as banal and ordinary, then people can see other aspects of what they otherwise wouldn’t notice. Christopher has a wide range of styles but he always return where he began, street photography and surrealism, the two of which often go hand in hand.
Photography has the potential to detach the photographer from experiencing moments, but inversely, it can be a sensuous and intimate experience. It encourages Christopher to explore and to enjoy the subtlety of life.
He got his inspiration for his series “Window Gazers” walking down the streets of New York City and only being accompanied with mannequins and designer products in the closed stores at night. He had the feeling that in the cold light of the storefront, their alien forms seemed to be watching him. The high contrast of the display lights gave the mannequins an often dystopian intensity. Some seemed distant and robotic, while others were lifelike and tragic. As he photographed them, he became curious about what they represented. Did people desire their icy forms? Did they mentally transplant their faces onto the void of featureless plastic?
“Something too struck me as religious and transcendent, ranging from the product worship, to the symbolism of light among darkness. These were the actors for my postmodern plays. I thought about how they felt about us. Did they envy us? Did they love us? Hate us? The interplay between life and lifelike artifice was a fascinating topic to consider. We watched them, and they watched us,” Luka told Resource. Voyeurism is an often present theme in this series.
One portion of this series had significant differences with the others. The shots involved were taken in El Paso, Texas, not New York City. He moved the mannequins around, and structured the scene, instead of the scene presenting themselves naturally. Many of them are of a more emotionally intimate quality than the rest of the mannequin photographs.
Photographs #2, #6, and #7 constitute their own series. This is a mannequin romance, beginning with a lonely woman gazing out of a window, wondering what the future will bring. In the next photograph, she has found love, and they embrace in the seemingly eternal rapture of their love. In the last photograph, paranoia has set in, even in a moment that should be peaceful and rejuvenating. The mannequin that is literally “damaged” leans on the shoulder of her lover. Yet, glancing behind her, she sees her shadow, looming, and threatening. Cracks have begun to emerge. She can’t escape herself.
To see more of Christophers’ work, visit his site.
If you’d like to be considered for Photographer of the Day, please follow us on Instagram @resourcemag and e-mail submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “POTD Submission.”