Hanna Mattes photographs from ‘Encounters’ are strange visionary pictures that lie somewhere between drug induced hallucinations and the history of spirit photography, her playful use of old photographic techniques eliciting a sense of ghostly apparitions and other world realities.
Inspired by early photographers, spiritualists and psychical researchers in the late 19th and early 20th Century Mattes captures beautiful images of the natural landscape before confounding us with strange auras and glowing orbs of light. All seemingly natural yet anything but. Her manipulation of light capturing a a metaphysical and supernatural aura that turns what we believe to be timeless physical entities into a momentary psychic experience. They are strange and utterly beguiling pictures that make a mockery of our rational perception of the material world and leave us with a sense of wonder, make us realise how ephemeral our life on this planet is.
It’s unfortunate that I can’t find out anything more about Mattes photographic series for they’re some of the most interesting images I have come across. Unique pictures from an idiosyncratic artist who has forged her own path through the photographic medium and is determined to create photographs that force us to look at things we cannot explain and rethink how we see the world around us.