Chasing Beauty is the title of Antonio Saba’s latest coffee table book. And beauty is what his work is about. Divided in three chapters – The Memory, The Journey, The Dreamlike – it shows a selection of Antonio’s most significant non-commercial work of the last few years. And as one idea often leads to another, Chasing Beauty was followed by a new project of conceptual photographs: Oneirism. It combines the best Dreamlike shots from Chasing Beauty with new work shot in Sardinia and Bangkok.
The photographs of the Oneirism project are fascinating. We’d also like to encourage you to have a look at some behind-the-scenes footage. It gives a hint of the massive amount of work and painstaking eye for detail that was required to create such outstanding photographs. This is what Antonio says about his sources of inspiration: “Oneirism comes from a Latin world that means dreamlike; I have always been interested in surrealism, and most of my ideas come out right after I wake up. I also look for a cinematic flavour in my shots. So basically my dreams are told in a single frame from a movie. My inspiration comes from photographers like Gregory Crewdson, Annie Leibowitz and from painters like Magritte and Caravaggio (for the light).”
The Oneirism photographs were first exhibited at the Photographer’s Gallery in River City Bangkok. Antonio met Linda Cheng, the Gallery’s General Manager, when working on a shoot for The Peninsula magazine in Bangkok. The Gallery now represents his work in Thailand. During the last couple of years Asian Culture became a source of inspiration to Antonio. He feels that Bangkok is developing into an interesting hub for art in Southeast Asia. The 25 Oneirism Pictures have been taken on location in Dubai, Bangkok, Costa Rica, Tokyo, Tuscany, Manila, Sardinia, New York, Paris, Beijing and Rome.
Being from Italian origin, Antonio Saba nowadays has his base in Dubai. About six years ago, his commercial work first led him there. Now he shoots approximately 40% of his work in the Emirates and the rest worldwide. For him Dubai is the perfect hub, well-connected with the rest of the world and establishing a business there was not only convenient but eventually inspiring and rewarding.
As so many photographers, Antonio has a background shooting film view cameras. In 2006 he shifted to DSLR. And felt something was missing. Not only the quality of the lenses and the larger format, but also the ability to control the perspective and plane of focus and – last but not least – the rituals working with a view camera require, which lead to an almost ‘Zen-like’ experience. Martin Wessel-Tolvig of Dubai based HotCold Studio introduced the Cambo WRS system to him. Now Antonio uses Nikon cameras for his lifestyle and handheld work and the Cambo WRS-5000 – with Rodenstock lenses and a Phase One back – for his fine-art photography. The WRS cameras combine essential view camera movements with portability. Paired with the best digital backs and finest lenses, the system enables you to achieve the best possible photographic quality. And at Cambo we’re pleased to know, that one of these cameras is in Antonio’s capable hands!
To see more of Antonio’s work www.antoniosaba.com
All behind-the-scenes footage – except Time Travellers – was produced by whatever.it