Vallinas, Miguel

Technique : Photography

Miguel Vallinas, photographer

Miguel Vallinas Prieto is a Spanish photographer born in 1971. He currently lives in the city of Medina del Campo in Valladolid, Spain.

After many years of working in television, industrial design and especially advertising, he now devotes most of his time to developing his own original creations. He sees them as studies of the varying notions of landscapes, for example: pure nature, urban environments, contemporary architecture and portraiture. His approach is more methodical than improvised. He carefully plans the place, the decor, the type of light, and all the other determining elements that will help to optimize each of his works. Technique is fundamental, in both taking the photographs and in the following steps of post-production. He often uses personal themes that will trigger an interest beyond mere contemplation, while trying to provoke a reflection of ones self. His work could be described as a search for beauty that is revealed by the way one views the world. His works have been exhibited in multiple galleries in several major cities around the world, including New York, Hong Kong, Berlin, Singapore, London, Madrid, Barcelona, Seoul, Miami, etc. It has also featured in prestigious journals such as Vogue, Vanity Fair, The Guardian, The New York Times, The Washington Post and many more.

His most recent work is much more surrealistic, and he creates photo montages to present the human subject in relation to the notion of identity: who does he want to be, what creates his being and his appearance, how do others see him, and ultimately, what is he really?

Over the years, the artist has developed a few distinct series, with the common thread of the theme of identity. The series are: Pieles (Skins), Segundas Pieles (Second Skins), Raíz (Roots) and Ceci n’est pas. In the Pieles series, the artist presents the different types of people we could become, whether professionally or socially, those that are within our reach or not, those imposed or adopted according to circumstance. In Segundas Pieles, the images attempt to isolate a person's character, ignoring context or references, and are based solely on the individual being. Segundas Pieles suggests options, opportunities and the different choices we can adopt in life. The busts of the characters in this series are represented by animals.

Raíz is the third incarnation of this series of photographs, and continues the reflection of identity, the existence, and the choices of an individual. The photographs show human bodies with plant-based heads and bouquets of flowers in varying flowering phases. While the body represents the stem and the head, the flower, the root remains invisible; this is what connects us to the earth, the place where we begin and from where we evolve, the beginning and the continuity of life. The root is the basis of our existence which inevitably determines the direction of the paths we will take. The term also refers to the different kinds of roots: our unions, our supporters, our foundations, our references, etc.

Ceci n’est pas is the culmination of the 3 previous series. It is intended as an open series, which can be interpreted in ways as diverse as the images that run through our heads. It is intended to present a deconstruction of the human being. It begins with a familiar representation and then evolves into a surrealistic image. Unlike his previous series, there is a physical separation between the body and the head, since the head is represented by inanimate objects. Ceci n’est pas intends to dive into the concept of identity and individual choices, combined with certain objects and images that can also influence and condition us.