Moroccan photographer and filmmaker Achraf Baznani (pronounced: Ashraf Baznani) carries on the traditions of Surrealism with his wild, imaginative, and wholly impractical imagery. Among his inventive scenarios, small human figures—often the artist himself—appear trapped within glass jars or the size of a camera lens; in other works, Baznani more or less dissects his body, as for example, in one, he cleanly removes his brain from his cranium, or in another, twists off his hand, much as if it were a light bulb. Imparted throughout such works are strong senses of humor and wonder, and as such, Baznani’s art offers a Surrealistic take on life experience in the digital age.
A self-taught artist, Baznani has no formal photography education. He lives and works in Morocco.
An artist is born within. Achraf Baznani did not realize that he was a born artist until he got a camera as a birthday gift in his teen ages. Like many other great people that have walked the earth, Achraf Baznani also had to know it from within and by chance that he was in fact an artist.
His dreams started growing and he couldn’t stop expressing his dreams. As a camera was in his hands, he wanted to capture the things in the nature that are very unnatural. In times he started capturing moments that were normal but looked extra ordinary in his pictures. This is how a surreal artist was born.
Achraf Baznani is not only good at photography, but he also likes it to play with the pictures so that he can make them entirely different with his after touch. His photography attempts to find the limits of imagination that are available. His after touch genius provides the photos with a complete different meaning. For example his art of an early day warplane with him on the cockpit without the roof is something unique.
His recently launched photobook creativity “Through my lens” has expressed very well the thought that pictures speaks louder than words. He expressed through vivid actions of his lens capturing numerous thought processes and deep thinking progressions running in human mind while facing various challenges in day to day life. Every picture is deeply expressing individual’s happiness, sorrows, loneliness and those through moments which remains closed to ones thoughts and never get expressed to others. In short the photobook has summarized the human life in very impressive manner.
Some of his art and photographs take him as the subject in theme. He often has art that has himself as a miniature human in between regular objects. The art where it shows him standing in the middle of a chess board is an amazing idea that he looks like a knight in there.
The beauty of this surrealist artist is that like his art and imagination, he himself is not limited to photography or art alone. He is a wonderful and award winning short film maker. One of the most spoken of his short films is the Emigrant. This short film was a breakthrough for the artist. It gave him great exposure. He used his imagination to set up the scenes. He used his freedom to choose the characters and the theme. The surrealist inside him gave the bravery to direct the short film the way that it earned him the Best Director award in more than five different awarding. The best of the awards was the National Film Festival short and documentary Casablanca 2009.
Achraf Baznani - CC BY-SA 4.0
One of the honorable gains is the first price won by this short film at the Arab League contest Short Film Assilah in 2009 as well. Even a single and simple brush stroke could be more beautiful than a flower when it comes from an artist. Achraf Baznani is certainly the kind of artist you want to see putting you inside an art. The best part is that when he places humans inside the art, it really is thought provoking and people feel like being inside the art. He often takes the freedom and enjoyment of putting his own image into play.
There is something new or unique in each and every artist and that is how they all come to pass. There is also something in Achraf Baznani that is not just easy to explain in words until you feel them. Of course, art is there to speak when words can’t. And in surreal art, you definitely don’t need words. With Achraf Baznani you will not be able to use words to describe. The feeling that gets into a person when looking at an art is the real accomplishment of art. Achraf Baznani has got just that.
Achraf Baznani est un artiste, réalisateur et photographe marocain, né à Marrakech.
Achraf Baznani a commencé la photographie par hasard et il est autodidacte. Il a reçu un appareil compact EKTRA 250 pour son anniversaire, puis il est devenu accro à l’objectif. Il a réalisé ensuite plusieurs courts métrages et documentaires, dont « Marche » en 2006, « Les oubliés » en 2007 ou encore « L’immigrant » en 2007 pour lequel il a reçu plusieurs prix nationaux, avant d’opter encore une fois pour la photographie, mais cette fois ci la photographie surréaliste.
La série Inside my dreams, où le photographe se met en scène dans un monde gigantesque à travers des auto-portraits surréalistes et poétiques, lui a permis d’être connu au Maroc et dans le reste du monde.
Baznani a aussi fait de nombreuses couvertures de magazine dans le monde entier.
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2014: 52 Project
2016: 52 Project
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