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by Maria Sofou

An Art-Sheep favorite (feature I & II), photographer Olivier Valsecchi is known for his dark, interesting nude portraits, exploring the human figure and its desire for expression.

In his series Dustthe photographer has captured powerful images of nude models covered in dust. The series consists of naked bodies, frozen in dynamic poses as they are surrounded by ashes, an element that gives them a sense of mystery and timelessness.

“Before anything, I would explain the intention and say: ‘The ashes symbolize Death and it wants to [cover] you but you have to get rid of it.’ Or: ‘Close your eyes, you don’t want the ashes to blind you, plus you will focus on your energy and forget you’re naked.’ […] Then the model would undress and kneel down. I would shower him or her with ashes. […] Then I would stand in front of the model and show what kind of movement I’m expecting to shoot. […] The model and I are gradually sharing a trance, because the process is three or four hours long, and in the end, due to the jumping, swirling, and the closed eyes, you kind of lose your marks and only [feel] the energy,” Valsecchi explains (Source).

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