The photo project “Flatlands” by the Hamburg photographer Henrik Spohler focuses on the landscape of the Netherlands – the country in which the genre of landscape photography was significantly developed in the 17th century.
The Netherlands is more densely populated than almost any other country in Europe. The land is criss-crossed by a dense network of roads and railways. Seemingly endless industrial areas along traffic routes characterize today’s landscape as a sign of economic prosperity. Every square meter of land here is meticulously used, every cubic meter of water is integrated into a controlled system of dikes, locks and canals, and the constant air flow from the sea meets countless wind turbines. The land, which was once considered a swampland that was difficult to live in, now symbolizes the radical change in the environment caused by humans. Flatlands is a journey into the wide field between the mental place of longing for the landscape and its actual form, in which the traces of civilization become visible.
The book design adds a three-dimensional aspect to the title “Flatlands”and thus plays with the viewer’s perception.