By the Roadside

By the roadside # 2830 - Padua, Italy © Michael Nguyen / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn

If we walk with our eyes open, we can see interesting, beautiful, and also ugly things along the road every day. And if we walk with not only with our eyes but also with our heart and mind open, you will discover a world that would otherwise remain closed to us. Sometimes spectacular. Sometimes ordinary but surprisingly miraculous. Be it a look into a garage, a view onto the riverbank, the bus stop before the chewing gum vendor machine, or just a footprint somebody has left on the opposite side of the pavement. Michael Nguyen accompanies us on little journeys through places in Bavaria, and elsewhere, to discover what the random walk leads us to.

Many of the photographs in the series belong to the field of architectural photography. In addition to the benefits for architects, architectural photography has many different social functions, such as the function of increasing value, in which architectural photographers are commissioned to photograph buildings in their ideal state. For Michael Nguyễn, architectural photography has exclusively an artistic function: the artistic component deliberately interprets a building in a way that deviates from reality. For this purpose, Nguyen uses often, among other things, digital image processing.

Michael Nguyen roamed various cities in Bavaria, Austria and Italy during the Corona pandemic. A focus of his works since COVID-19 are urban landscapes as well as urban spaces in different cities. Urban spaces can all enrich a life between buildings. Sports facilities, parking lots, bus stops, children's playgrounds, sidewalks, bike racks, shopping mall forecourts, and more are all places where necessary, voluntary, and social outdoor activities are possible and offer the opportunity to grow social life in the city. Since Covid-19, social interaction in the Urban landscapes with their spaces has lain fallow. Michael Nguyen conveys this sensitively in his mostly "deserted pictures“. Nguyen enters the motifs of his urban landscapes with a great deal of empathy. He makes the city, urban landscapes and architecture visible and documents them for posterity. With his artistic documentary photography he refers to a reality that we all know, but interprets this reality with his images. 

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