When you think of the world’s most beautiful landscapes, you probably imagine sweeping green fields and tranquil blue lakes, but Zak van Biljon’s stunning infrared photography puts a surreal twist on how we typically see the world. His series, Modernising Nature, features vivid pink and red landscapes that invite the viewer to question how we perceive nature.
Originally from Cape Town, the talented photographer is now based in Zurich where he captures Switzerland’s epic mountainscapes. From magenta-colored canyons and hills to fields of fuchsia foliage, van Biljon’s infrared landscapes look like candy-colored dream worlds. Although the scenes are still familiar, van Biljon provides a fresh perspective inspired by technology and the millions of highly-filtered photos of nature on social media. “People are subdued to an irresistible attraction to the bright vivid lights of cities and screens,” he says. “The artificial becomes real and the natural reality or the reality of nature is hyped by means of technology such as filtered Instagram pictures.”
Van Biljon hopes his vivid images will inspire busy city dwellers to stop, look up from their screens, and appreciate nature. “We need a new way of looking at nature in the 21st century, just like the landscape painters of the 19th century who were confronted with industrialization,” he says. “Cities are growing into megacities, more than half of today’s population was born in cities and this new generation is a technological generation, convenience driven but: nature free. And yet: humanity can never free itself from nature.”
Scroll down to see the images from van Biljon's Modernising Nature series and see more from his portfolio on his website.