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Place | Leut

PLACE | Because graduating creatives have less opportunity to show themselves this year, we are happy to make room for six aspiring photographers in De Tijd. Today: Seppe Vanderauwera.

The final years of the bachelor’s degree in photography at Sint-Lucas in Antwerp were assigned a Flemish place with a special name for one of their assignments. Seppe Vanderauwera (21) moved to Leut, a village that belongs to Maasmechelen.

‘Nothing to see here. What am I doing here? ‘ That was the first thing Seppe thought when he arrived in Leut. But strolling through the village, he saw so many trees in the front yards that had grown and cut into unnatural shapes that he could not ignore them. Everyone seemed to want to put forward their identity in one way or another. You always thought you were in a different country. I wanted to document that. ‘

© Seppe Vanderauwera

© Seppe Vanderauwera

It had to be black and white. And flashed out. ‘Because I could emphasize the artificial with harder contrasts.’ The owners of the gardens did not see what Seppe saw. ‘When I explained to a man that I was photographing his tree, he laughed out loud. He said, “I have another car here. If you want to take a picture of that too… ‘

© Seppe Vanderauwera

Seppe likes the casual approach. ‘I’m not asking permission. I’m just taking a chance. I did the same with an earlier series about quarries. And if someone has a hard time with it, then I delete the image. ‘

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