Oliver Klink

Oliver Klink studies in physics and photography were the catalyst for his love of light and the complexity of our existence. As a fine art photographer, he travels the world to capture the intricacy of our ecosystems. The link between his various body of works is the increasingly complex modern world constantly unfolding in new and unexpected ways. He captures our cultural changes, the environments we inhabit, and the insights into our world and ourselves. His artistic goal is telling stories with his images, making the viewers dream, and providing a glimpse of “the world as it should be”.

Oliver’s work has been published with National Geographic, Days of Japan, Black & White magazine, Popular Photography magazine, DailyMail, My Modern Met, FeatureShoot, 6 mois Magazine, Weather.com, among others. In 2019, his book, Cultures In Transition won SEVEN AWARDS for best photography book (IPPY, International Book Awards, PubWest, Mifa, Foreword Indies, PX3). In 2018, he was selected as Black and White photographer of the year 2018 by Dodho magazine, Critical Mass Top 50 fine art photographer, and won the SpotLight Award by Black and White Magazine. In 2017, his project “Circus” was selected as Top 50 projects “Seeing in Sixes” by LensWork Magazine, and by RFotoFolio as “selected artists”. In 2016, he was selected as Critical Mass Top 50 fine art photographer, “Best of the best” emerging fine art photographer by BWgallerist, and received People’s Choice award from Black and White Magazine single image contest for “Stepwell”. In 2014, his image “Herding Instinct” won the grand prize at the Rayko International Photo contest. In 2013, “The Great Migration” was selected as the Grand Prize winner at the 30th anniversary Spring Show Exhibit at the PhotoCentral Gallery in Hayward, CA. Other awards have included the Mike Ivanitsky award for photographic excellence (2009) and nominations at the prestigious Black & White Spider Award (2010-2016).

His images have been exhibited at solo shows at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, Monterey, California; PhotoCentral Gallery, Hayward, California; Pictura Gallery, Bloomington, Indiana; Camerawork Gallery, Portland, Oregon; BWGallerist, RedFilter Online Gallery; Galerie Shadows, Arles, France; Conti Museum, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Oliver is a master of the new digital printing process called Piezography. By using a combination of pigment ink and a proprietary profiling process he produces enhanced highlight and shadow details that exceed what is capable of using silver-based or platinum-based traditional darkroom processes.

Originally from Switzerland, Oliver currently resides in Los Gatos, California with his wife.

Artist’s Statement

Being raised in the relatively homogeneous land of Switzerland in a small farming community, I was completely in awe of the incredible diversity, both in the environment and the culture of China. China seemed to be a country in rapid transition, from agrarian to urban, from antiquated to modern, from a historical relic to a future superpower. The images I took on that trip were less than stellar, but I felt a spark within me to further explore China and other Asian cultures. Over 30 visits later, Cultures in Transition was born.

Cultures in Transition aims at showing the changes that people go through, the subtleties that make their life evolve, the spiritual guiding light. I resisted depicting the visual transitions, such as the new electronic devices, the high-rise buildings going up like mushrooms, the freeways built as quickly as sand castles, the modern transportation, the influence of western clothing, the packaged food and the old villages turned into tourist attractions.

Cultures in Transition is about something deeper, something that it took time to observe, to detect, and to understand. I watched people, and I started to feel their emotions about change, their worries, their acceptance. I witnessed them falling behind, trying to hold on to their comfort zones, their culture, and their spirituality. Everyone that I interacted with described transition differently, but one thing that was common was that the typical visual signs of “progress” were the least of their worries. The loss of emotional connection with themselves and their communities was their most significant concern. These people lived their lives on Spirit, Heart, and Soul.

Geir Jordahl (Publisher, True North Editions) writes: “Klink’s images transcend borders without homogenizing very distinct peoples, nationalities, and cultures. The uniqueness of each is present, yet Klink asks us to see the links between them and to see ourselves within each tribe. He connects us through the use of common bonds, gestures, and expressions. In this way the personalities of his subjects shine through – their emotion, their joy, their connections with each other and, by association their connection to the viewer.”