How it started
Since his childhood, Didier Engels likes to stroll on the docks of the ports. At the age of 20, he experiences docker life at the port of Zeebrugge and this port affinity will never leave him. He discovers the phenomenal maritime traffic that fascinates his eyes: ships used by sea salt, freighters washed by the tides or containers patinated by sea spray. As many unique colors and raw materials that allow the photographer to release all the beauty and power of their symbolism. Didier Engels then goes back to his first memories as a docker and makes a series of photographs from the docks of the port of Antwerp. He finds in the containers the perfect witness of his obsession for colors, preferably patinated, and for the subjects laden with history.
Sedimentary textures, faded colours, oxidized marks; it is in this territory that Didier Engels evolves.
After a first successful exhibition, Didier will dedicate his time to capture the colors and freeze the moments in this unique universe of docks. Inspired by this maritime universe, he creates a series of abstract photographs from which he draws beauty from boat hulls. Bright and past-colored photographs that reflect the experience of these ships that have been returned to port or stored in dry dock. His work extends, during his exhibitions, into discussions with the visitors and the chance to explain the before and after of his photos. His chief interest is in the materials, patinas, alignments, colors, reflections and above all the graphic and geometric aspects of the world of quays. His work has been exhibited to great acclaim at art fairs and galleries that represent him in Europe and the United States.