This starkly beautiful landscape series was selected as a finalist in the Magnum Photography Awards 2016. Discover more inspiring work from all 44 of the winners, finalists, jurors’ picks and student spotlight award winners.
Namibia: a country named after a desert. One of the least densely populated places on earth. Defined by its rich variety of colors—yet in a forever changing, yet completely barren landscape.
The land draws you in, through a vast brown plain of scorched earth, and steers you over the white surface of a salt pan to finally arrive in the pink hue of the sand dunes. Patience is required to discover the wide range of Namibia’s subtle scenery. It literally takes you hours, driving though nothing, to at long last arrive at…more of nothing.
The sight of other people is rare and only the strategically located gas stations are a reminder of the world beyond. This country is in another time zone—time seems to move slower but it feels more logical, somehow.
Captivated by these washed out yet delicately colored landscapes, you can drive for hours. Chaperoned by herds of giraffes or zebras, shadowed by flocks of flamingos, suddenly stumbling upon a family of elephants. The animals look up curiously, but soon forget about you and slowly continue their journey, continuing, unhurried by your presence, at their own pace.
The video above was shot by Lavigne from the seat of her car, while driving through the savannah (alone!). Although admittedly lo-fi, the video gives a wonderful sense of the vast solitude of the landscape as well as the vivid closeness from which Lavigne shot her animal subjects.
Maroesjka Lavigne finds herself consistently drawn to the corners of the earth that are bereft of people—her award-winng series, Ísland, captures life in the barren yet beautiful landscapes of Iceland.