His work seems to tell a story, in its essence focusing on a defining moment – captured in the right instant. Robert Nil Reed expands and questions with his intimate and fragile yet powerful pictures both youth and perfection as the common notion of beauty. His protagonists appear mostly natural and hardly made-up, his photographs barely processed. Still Robert’s work represents a homage to beauty – without exaggerating it to extremes.
Silence plays a significant role in all his work. Robert’s pictures are devoid of all noise and the unnecessary. The moment when everything comes together and starts to flow, when the essence, the personality, becomes visible and tangible – this special moment is of utmost importance to the artist. It becomes possible through creating a climate of trust during the artistic process: between the photographer and the model, the model and the setting, as well as the setting and the photographer. This familiarization and engagement in the process results in the perfect balance, in which silence can arise – which in turn is required for creating exactly the right moment for the protagonists to be completely themselves; making it possible for Robert to depict their inner essence. The results are profound and sensitive portraits, which give the observer a chance to see right into the soul of the portrayed person.
Born in 1975 in Feldbach in Styria, Austria, Robert Nil Reed has lived and worked in Vienna for many years. During his photographic career, he consequently reduced his imagery, concentrating more and more on the model’s gaze. With his focus previously set on portraits with a dark and reduced background, he now also gives landscape scenarios an essential role in his works. In collaboration with his wife, make-up artist and stylist Sophie Chudzikowski, he effectively sets the scene for his models in Portugal’s rugged and mystical landscape – resulting in a series of nude portraits, poignant in a very unorthodox way, and showing once again the artist’s sense of longing for naturalness and authenticity.