Shooting frozen flowers

I have to admit, I’d never have thought of it – and still less described it as ‘art’ – but this is strangely fascinating.

German photographer Martin Klimas has a thing for explosions. Previously, he’s made art by photographing shattered fragile ceramic figures as they hit the ground and firing projectiles at onions, pumpkins and ears of corn.

Now, he’s brought this explosive approach to a new medium: flower blossoms in full bloom, frozen by liquid nitrogen.

“I was inspired by the blossoms themselves,” he says of his new project, “Exploding Flowers,” which he worked on for nearly a year and publicly debuted about a month ago. “There are so many different forms and species on the planet. I was interested in the blossom’s architecture, and I tried to make that visible by breaking the blossom into as many pieces as possible.”

To achieve this, he sought out flowers with particularly complex internal structures and froze them to -200° Celsius in liquid nitrogen. Once they were frozen, he had to be careful. “They’re as fragile as raw eggs,” he says. “You can destroy them by sneezing.”

After the flowers were frozen, he brought them to his set and placed the stem in a vice to hold the blossom in front of a white background. He used a normal air gun rigged with a device that let him remotely pull the trigger, and took a series of shots right at the moment of impact.

There’s more at the link, including many more photographs.  Recommended reading.

I’m honestly not sure whether this is ‘art’ as I understand that concept;  but it’s certainly a unique visual experience.  What do you think?  Let us know in Comments.



  1. It is different, and certainly engages the mind – and some would say that's the whole purpose of art.

    I think you nailed it with "unique visual experience."

  2. Personally, I don't understand his fascination with destruction of beauty. Are his images a technical accomplishment? Absolutely. But IMHO it's not art, it's just recording something ugly. Say I who consider myself an artist.

  3. Definitely the unique visual, perhaps beautiful in the eye of some beholders, but art?
    My definition of art is something which stands or falls on its own merits; I see a lot of cult of personality out there (Tate Modern anyone?)so if it would not be as 'good' if I did it, it is NOT art.

  4. Flowers are transient things, Purplemagpiesnest. They exist for a brief moment of glorious color and scent, and then disappear leaving only our memories of them and maybe a seed for more flowers next year.

    Whether that flower was frozen and shattered or withered on the stem makes no difference to the flower.

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