N. Jonas Englund · Painter

About the Snapshots

PIRATER · 30x30 cm, oil on canvas (inspired by a picture from The Louvre in Paris)

I have for some time reflected over the way we almost obsessively document our lives today, mainly through compact cameras and smartphones. We shoot pictures at nearly every moment, of what we see and what we do. Ten percent of all photos ever taken have been taken in the past twelve months. What happens to all these pictures? What would happen if we change medium and treat these frozen moments with the same reverence we show artwork painted during uncountable hours, days, and weeks? What would that tell us about our lives and how we view ourselves? What would we find in such paintings; what stories are hidden therein?

This is my prosaic journey of exploration into the lives of humans, in search of the essence of our lives. An alchemical transformation of spontaneous snapshots into works of art in traditional oils. By treating the captured scenes as I would painting “sur le motif” or “en plain air,” I try to span the gap between a superficial digital present and a more permanent presence of history. The files on our computers can be erased in a short electromagnetic burst, compared to these paintings that will outlast us all.