Hubert Burda Media

Through the Lens: Maxime Lenik

Through the Lens: Maxime Lenik

Through the Lens: Maxime Lenik

Perfection is an idea. According to Latin and Greek concepts, it not only refers to things without any flaws, but also "to finish" or "bring to an end".

 My first picture depicting the branches of a tree are an example of nature complexity and symmetry being beautiful and peaceful. In the fine arts, perfection is associated to the golden ratio. Pythagoras followed by Plato used it to influence many artists and architects to this day through harmony in proportions. The more you run away from something, the more it catches up to you. So when you react against a rule of life, you might as well start to embrace it.

 The next photo which portrays artificial branches is a human way to imitate nature in its accidental symmetry. It is interesting to see the relation between God and perfection throughout history. The discussion over a finite or infinite God and his perfect attributes were peacefully and violently debated with throughout our modern history, deeply influencing the Christian religion. I believe the cycle of life and death is perfection. New ideas can only come if we let go of older ones.

 I tend to agree with the fact that "existence itself is perfection" (Descartes) or even the idea that "perfection is an attribute of god" (Wolf) as human can't be perfect and in Latin "errare humanum est" –the error is human. The mistakes we make are what make us human. Throughout the cycle of life, we hopefully learn from such mistakes, for we can only see the light after the darkness.

 The next image of a grid-like framework of a roof represents our human condition on this planet. Life was made only possible because the atmosphere, our earthly roof, protect the earth from the sun and its deadly radiation. Life always comes from chemical imbalance. Life started from bodies of chemical and physical imbalance. Through a fierce exchange of energy, the imbalance transformed to achieve that state of stability and perfection we know as life.

 In the picture I took of the damaged wall, I believe it represents the fact that Beauty is all around us. We can find it anywhere and everywhere, even in a crooked or damaged wall. It is always a matter of perspective. In my life, I try to be optimistic and make the best out of any situation, even the bad ones. It is possible to transform difficult moments and crisis into fresh starts and new opportunities. The end of something is always the beginning of something else.

 Finally, the photograph of the small plant thriving in a concrete and hostile environment represents my life as an artist. I have to confess that as a teenager, my family did not support me becoming an artist. But today as my music gets to be in the top of the charts while I’m regularly invited to perform around the world, my parents are proud I went all the way through with my passion. Never stop being yourself and do what you love to do. The sky is not the limit, your imagination is. In music, I would define perfection with Bach or Schoenberg with their perfectly arranged music. Even at a young age, Mozart composed perfect music that didn’t need any adjustments. However, in jazz improvisation, I often learnt that a chance mistake could smartly be turned into a fresh new idea. I love the concept of serendipity.

 -Maxime Lenik