Rohan Reilly is a self-taught photographer and fine art gallery owner based in Cork, Ireland. Formerly a record label owner, producer, and DJ, Rohan lived in Barcelona, Spain for several years. Inspired by the historic art and architectural scenes, he developed a fascination for the works of Calatrava and Gaudi and soon after took to his craft.
Rohan’s initial work focused on the architecture of the city, but he quickly began to focus on the abstract landscape of the Catalonian coast and Cadaques, a remote fishing village on the Costa Brava coast.
Influenced by the work of English photographer Michael Kenna and Japanese minimalist artist Hiroshi Sugimoto, Reilly was also inspired by the music he produced and created as a DJ.
Music was a catalyst for his work with images that reflect the control of a composer who creates simple uncluttered compositions, reducing a scene to the essential elements and drawing the viewer in to the textures, tones, and composition.
“The music that inspired me was quite often very sparse and atmospheric with lots of depth. I made a conscious decision to draw connections between these images and the music I listened to and played: this relationship helped me develop my photographic style.”
His images are shot exclusively in black and white with long exposures, creating a perspective and ethereal mood for the viewer that is unique and compelling.
Reilly uses long exposures to draw out the essential elements of a scene. His images are enigmatic and compelling, inviting us into a monochromatic world of clean lines and powerful shapes.
Reilly’s work focuses on the sky and sea as elements forming a blank canvas that impart moods of serenity, solitude, melancholy, hope and wonder. There is a simplicity and wonder when combined with long exposures, particularly scenes that reflect inclement weather fog, rain, snow, and flooded terrains to draw out these essential elements, creating a perspective and mood that is deeply introspective.
In 2013 Rohan travelled to Japan to photograph the unique and minimalist images of the Japanese countryside.
He also developed an appreciation for Zen philosophy and the aesthetics of Wabi Sabi and the principles of Kanso, Fukinsei and Shibui, among others.
His work became more minimal and abstract as he discovered Japanese influences while utilizing the form, shapes, and lines that he had observed in the architecture in Barcelona.
Rohan has received awards from many prestigious organizations including The Prix De La Photographie in Paris, International Photography Awards, Grand Prix de la Decouverte, UK Landscape Photographer of the Year, and Black and White Spider Awards.
He exhibits regularly in Ireland and has been published in magazines and newspapers including The Irish Sunday Times, The Independent, Photography Week, and Dodho Magazine.
He is currently working on a series of work titled Sketches. When not running his gallery he photographs and teaches popular photography workshops across Ireland and Europe.