Through the eyes of Beirut-based photographer Serge Najjar, the architecture of the Lebanese capital distills into surreal compositions of striking color and geometry. For the past two years, Najjar has been working on this "Abstract Realities" photo series, a running collection of the architectural details that catch his attention while he drives around the city.
Almost all of the buildings in the series are located in the greater Beirut region. In deciding which structures to photograph, Najjar always follows his instinct, guided by his reactions to geometry, lines, light, and shadows. But sometimes that's just not possible. "It is often hard for me to take photographs in fragile zones because people are suspicious and many zones are unaccessible for security reasons," he explains in an email.
Yet in the scenes he is able to capture, many do feature at least one central figure interacting with the built environment. According to Najjar, this isn't intentional and the people in the shots usually don't know they are being photographed. He says he actually takes many architectural photographs that include no people, but chooses to share the ones that do. His reason? "I like the 'duel' between Man and Architecture; a human being in a picture brings at the same time warmth and scale to architecture. This gives, in its turn, an abstract dimension to Man."
Catch more of Najjar's work on his Instagram.
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