The idea of ‘average’ is strange, especially when it’s put into real-world situations and memories. The places most familiar to us change on a daily basis, even if it’s just the slightest bit, but when we look back, our brains piece together this conglomeration of what we’ve seen over the days, months and years to create a familiar, cohesive memory.
It was a similar line of thinking that inspired photographer Wolfgang Hildebrand to create his strangely chaotic compositions of city streets.
While these images are massive in size and ‘large format’ in terms of pixels, Hildebrand wanted to clarify for us that the photographs were actually captured on a DSLR (some features have claimed otherwise). Although he developed the idea using a large format camera, the digital workflow makes for a much simpler setup and better way to view the results on-location.
For each final image, there are a bare minimum of two photographs composited together in post-production to yield an ‘average’ moment. This blending of ‘time-layers’ creates an interesting piece of information that never truly happened as is, but strangely, doesn’t look out of place either.
“Even though this new unique moment never actually happened, it looks somehow familiar to the viewer,” Hildebrand tells us. “Only at second glance [do] we loose orientation and realize the complex new reality shown — questioning our common photographic perception.”
Below are a few more images he was kind enough to let us share with you:
Image credits: Photographs by Wolfgang Hildebrand and used with permission