Home / Illusion / Artist Rearranges Photos Into “Exploding” Collages That Look Like They’ve Been Shot

Artist Rearranges Photos Into “Exploding” Collages That Look Like They’ve Been Shot

Explosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian Oefner

Interested in exploring “the ephemeral poetry of time,” artist Fabian Oefner focuses on capturing and conveying movement in his photographs. This emphasis on energy is apparent in most of the Swiss creative’s awe-inspiring work, including his colorful sound wave studies, stills of bursting bubbles, and—most recently—a shattering series of Explosion Collages.

Each black-and-white photo featured in Explosion Collages appears to depict the dramatic moment it is destroyed by a single gunshot. Shredded paper and particles of debris delineate the bullet’s apparent path as it strikes through the object.

While seemingly authentic, the damage done to each piece is actually executed by the artist. By cutting and rearranging the photographs into captivating collages, Oefner freezes a fleeting—and fabricated—point in time and space. “What seems to be a genuine photograph of an ephemeral moment is in fact just an illusion,” the artist explains, adding that each photo “shows a real yet non­existing moment in time.”

Furthermore, though many contemporary collages are produced digitally, Oefner creates his entirely by hand. In addition to accentuating each piece’s alleged authenticity, this approach illustrates the artist’s interest in reimagining a three-dimensional work of art and signifies a “return to the photograph as a physical object.”

Fabian Oefner’s ‘Explosion Collages’ features portraits that look like they’ve been shot.

Explosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerExplosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerExplosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerExplosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerExplosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian Oefner

Oefner achieves this aesthetic by meticulously cutting and rearranging each photograph into a visually perplexing portrait collage

Explosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerExplosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerExplosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerExplosion Collages Explosion Art Portrait Collage Fabian OefnerFabian Oefner: WebsiteInstagram | Facebook | Behance | 500px | Vimeo

My Modern Met granted permission to use photos by Fabian Oefner.

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Electric Colored Paint Dances to Different Genres of Music

Kelly Richman-Abdou

Kelly Richman-Abdou is a Contributing Writer at My Modern Met. An art historian living in Paris, Kelly was born and raised in San Francisco and holds a BA in Art History from the University of San Francisco and an MA in Art and Museum Studies from Georgetown University. When she’s not writing, you can find Kelly wandering around Paris, whether she’s leading a tour (as a guide, she has been interviewed by BBC World News America and France 24) or simply taking a stroll with her husband and two tiny daughters.

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