Architecture

Filip Dujardin's impossible architectures defy both physics and sense

Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Dujardin says that shadows are the key to his work's realism (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Dujardin says that shadows are the key to his work's realism (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Dujardin became interested in architectural photography because of the inherent sculptural qualities of building forms (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Dujardin became interested in architectural photography because of the inherent sculptural qualities of building forms (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
The solo exhibition will take place at San Francisco's Highlight Gallery from February 7 to March 29 (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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The solo exhibition will take place at San Francisco's Highlight Gallery from February 7 to March 29 (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Dujardin says that shadows are the key to his work's realism (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Dujardin says that shadows are the key to his work's realism (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Dujardin became interested in architectural photography because of the inherent sculptural qualities of building forms (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Dujardin became interested in architectural photography because of the inherent sculptural qualities of building forms (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
The solo exhibition will take place at San Francisco's Highlight Gallery from February 7 to March 29 (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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The solo exhibition will take place at San Francisco's Highlight Gallery from February 7 to March 29 (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
9/10
Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
Dujardin says that shadows are the key to his work's realism (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)
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Dujardin says that shadows are the key to his work's realism (Filip Dujardin/Highlight Gallery)

San Francisco's Highlight Gallery will shortly host a remarkable solo exhibition of architectural imagery by Belgian artist Filip Dujardin. Note the avoidance of the word photography. Though Dujardin's photographs provide the building blocks for his work, the end result are fantastical, Photoshopped constructions depicting nonsensical or even impossible architecture.

Dujardin became interested in architectural photography because of the inherent sculptural qualities of building forms. With such purity of purpose, it seems logical that Dujardin began creating digital architectural sculptures of his own, unfettered by client whims, economic constraints or the laws of physics.

And that's precisely how Dujardin's "Fictions" came about. According to an interview given to Elle Decor, a single image may incorporate 150 or more "fragments" from Dujardin's personal library of architectural features and building textures, photographed over the years. Initially experimenting in Photoshop, removing a door here or a window there, Dujardin progressed to building and photography LEGO maquettes to which his photographed textures are applied.

"Adding shadows, that’s the main trick," Dujardin told Elle Decor. "The building becomes real if the shadows are well done."

The images here are among those that will be exhibited at Highlight Gallery, and are based on two photography shoots that took place last year, when Dujardin was invited to Deauville, a town on the north coast of France, and to Guimarães in northern Portugal.

The solo exhibition will take place at Highlight Gallery from February 7 to March 29. In the meantime, take to our gallery for high resolution JPEGs of Dujardin's work. More of Dujardin's work can be seen at his website.

Sources: Highlight Gallery, Elle Decor

All images courtesy of Highlight Gallery

7 comments
Jon A.
Thanks for the article, these are delightful!
Bill Bennett
They look bitchin'
Norino Keraman
Big challenge
Walt Stawicki
hate the gingerbread two. love the shaddow awareness. he could create some wonderful interior space if he kept it simple. that beach pool? to die for...figuatively
Ed
If you go to the Outer Banks of North Carolina, you can see something similar to the first picture....the dunes completely covered a church and an amusement park. This is right at Nags Heads Kites at Jockey's Ridge!
Nairda
Sorry, maybe I misunderstood the punch line. All the designs are beautiful, unique and straightforward from a civil engineering point of view. With the exception of the slum under the bridge that is both difficult to construct and pointless unless it is much wider. I would consider building up such a structure with the foot of the bridge as a support. Drill and chemset bolts to support building layers.
jack.wickwire
It is as if Escher had gone for a degree in architecture. When I looked at Sheds on his website, I saw all the quirky, half-planned, made-from-scraps buildings I have seen alongside the roads I have driven.
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