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Unseen Red Asia by Martin Reeves

The world of Martin Reeves

Martin Reeves shooting with Nikon F2Humans race toward the future on a titanic treadmill of development and technology with promises that this development and technology will bring happiness and understanding to their lives. Remnants of ancient peoples are coerced or forced to assimilate into the norm and sacred sites of the past are dressed up like theme parks, devoid of all their magic and mystery.

Martin Reeves’ quest began twenty-seven years ago, when he set out for India with a 1972 Nikon F2 and a few rolls of infrared black & white film, just to see. The emulsion of infrared film is sensitive not only to visible light, but also to infrared light — a portion of light from the huge bandwidth outside the boundaries of the naked eye. He develops this film by hand, where a traditional black-and-white negative is attained, yet photographs printed from these negatives reveal extraneous subtle light from a hidden world, a world that really does exist beyond the confines of our visual spectrum.

Enlightened by his experiences in India, his personal photographic journey then continued through Burma, Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam. Martin chose infrared black-and-white film as a medium on which to illustrate a dream-like timeless Asia, like a bridge on which to cross over the boundary of the imagination; his photos became a way of portraying Eastern mysticism in a tangible form.

He was lucky to have experienced a quiet time to document mysterious locations and indigenous peoples on a film so suited. Places like Angkor have changed beyond recognition over the past two decades — the jungle has gradually been tamed and kempt, and the aura of the temples diluted as the wooden walkways, fences, signs, and barriers amounted >> Download Martin Reeves biography

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  • Martin’s Asian portfolios have been featured twice in ZOOM, the international fine art photography magazine;
  • His fourteen-year labour-of-love wandering the temples of Angkor culminated in 2007 with his book Angkor: Into The Hidden Realm, prefaced by HRH Princess Rattana-Devi;
  • Following this, HRH Norodom Sihamoni, the King of Cambodia, chose four photographs from Martin’s Angkor portfolio as state gifts;
  • Also in 2007, Martin was featured, alongside other internationally renowned photographers, in the book project Thailand: 9 Days In The Kingdom — a tribute to HRH King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s eightieth birthday;
  • Legendary designer Bill Bensley has commissioned Martin Reeves on several occasions and his photographs appear as permanent exhibitions in locations such as the 5-Star Hotel de la Paix and Shinta Mani Hotel in Siem Reap, and Bangkok’s luxurious Royal Residence Clubhouse;
  • Thailand’s most famous artist, Ajarn Thawan Duchanee, recently assigned Martin Reeves to photograph his surreal building complex, Baan Dam, in the northern city of Chiang Rai. Seventy-four limited edition box sets consisting of seventy-four A2 photographs have been made, and a large-format book is set to follow later this year.


How to apply for Online Exhibition?

Every month Rock Around Asia organizes on its website a virtual Exhibition to promote an artist, a concept, anything under artistic statement (photography, painting, sculpture, music, video, sounds, design, architecture, etc..). A newsletter presenting the artist and his project is then emailed to the whole Rock Around Asia community (customers, partners, supporters, suppliers, medias, artists, visitors, etc..). The artworks presented are of course offered for sale (see specifically for terms and conditions). If you are interested to introduce your art, please apply here.