French lensman shows work in Sharjah - GulfToday

French lensman shows work in Sharjah

Xposure2019

Grégory POL said nature photography in all its splendour and majesty could touch people’s hearts.

Sohaila Ahmed, Staff Reporter

Set against a pristine white backdrop, French photographer Grégory POL’s exhibition at XPOSURE 2019, “Nord et Blanc” (North and White) was hard to miss. Especially the mysterious eyes of the snowy owl, which stare right into yours when you’re looking, and even seem to follow when you walk away from the picture. Aptly named “Eyes,” that purposeful stare elicits several questions about the humankind’s blatant disregard of the fragility of our natural world.    

“Most people love this picture. Irrespective of the direction you view it from, the snowy owl looks right back into your eyes,” says POL, speaking to Gulf Today on the sidelines of the four-day International Photography Festival in Sharjah.

The French photographer, who is also a sailor and scuba diver, says he wants to continue exploring deeper connections with the majestic, yet fragile beauty of nature. Through his works that capture the natural world in all its glory, the conservation photographer wants to sensitise people about the delicate balance, which keeps it all working.

His exhibit is a rich collection of pictures, which remind visitors that a seemingly rough and ruthless natural environment may, in fact, be incredibly fragile.

“For three long winters, I travelled over the hills of Saint Pierre-et-Miquelon archipelago, Finland and Greenland to try to approach the snowy owl,” he said, adding that as a child all he wanted to do was travel and explore the world, and at age 12, dreamed of joining Commander Cousteau aboard the Calypso.

Like POL, artist Florian Ledoux’s passion for nature and photography in the majestic Arctic began when he was a little child. One of his pictures on display at the festival titled “Above the Polar Bear” brings a brand new perspective to most people’s understanding and knowledge of wildlife in the polar regions.

 Ledoux said, “I’ve always been connected to nature. My parents first took me to Finland, where I experienced -45°C when I was a child. It’s stayed with me since.”

“When I photograph and find myself in the remote Polar region, the urge to create an image that I would remember for the rest of my life with a strong message to protect it comes naturally to me, as I believe images are a powerful agent of communication that can allow us to reconnect Human to Nature,” Ledoux added.

POL explains nature photography in all its splendour and majesty could touch people’s hearts and change the way the human race perceives conservation efforts.