Young Guns 17: Evelyn Bencicova
By Brett McKenzie on Nov 04, 2019
Shining a light on the amazing class of Young Guns 17
What happens when you take a jury of 60+ respected creatives, more than 500 entries from all over the globe, and mix them all together for two months of serious consideration, debate and decision-making? Eventually you get the winners of Young Guns 17! This year, The One Club for Creativity is honoring a creatively diverse class of 28 winners, including animators, designers, photographers, illustrators, film directors and editors, all of whom came out of this process as true champions of their craft.
Ahead of the Young Guns 17 Ceremony + Party taking place on November 20, we are featuring the various superstars who will be taking the stage that evening.
A big congrats on being named to this year's Young Guns class! This is your first time entering, no?
Thank you! Yes, this is my first time entering, and I only recently discovered Young Guns. It seemed like such a great platform for creatives, merging their artistic and commercial approaches. I entered and just hoped that I belonged there!
It must have been a big surprise when you won!
Oh yes, I was just happy that my work and effort was appreciated by the jury. It always feels very rewarding to be recognized, and it motivates me for the future.
Do you have a favorite project among the ones you entered?
It is impossible to say which one is my favorite. Each one is very different and has its own power. A lot of my work is very personal. I am driven to express my thoughts, share a vision, and fight my own fears.
How would you describe your creative style?
I would say that it is indescribable. I usually try to shift between different mediums, genres, and work approaches. Right now my work process is mostly about thinking, finding a way to explore the topics deeper and to push them further visually.
What is your favorite tool when it comes to making what you do, something you’d feel naked without?
Definitely my collaborators, the people with whom I share my creative vision. With the right people, ideas can develop from conversations, exchanging several points of view and challenging each other. Of course, I don't consider my collaborators to be a tool, but they are definitely the thing that I appreciate most. I do not feel complete without.them.
What do you do when you hit a creative wall, when you are stuck for ideas and solutions?
I just try to observe, to think, to analyze. I'll experiment, I'll change mediums and approaches, I'll try to access the problem from different angles. I don't give up, but I know that the solution can often change paths throughout the process
What are some of the biggest influences on your work and career?
I take inspiration from many sources, including literature, classical arts, architecture, film, and music. I also get inspired by everyday life in the world around me. I actually prefer to be inspired by references outside of photography, because you can then reinterpret them more freely. Two of my biggest influences are directors Andrzej Zulawski and Roy Andresson.
From my personal circle, there have been few people who believed in me from the start and still do. I feel that all I do is still a work in progress, something developing and changing, and I constantly find new people, ideas and conversations which inspire me and move me deeply. I feel that by giving concrete names, I would have to leave out many others. Nevertheless, these people know who they are!
Now that you’re in the Young Guns family, are there any past winners that you look up to and admire?
Stefan Sagmeister (YG1) studied at the same university as me, so I'm quite familiar with his work.
Name a creative dream that you have yet to fulfill.
To keep searching, developing and go beyond what seems to be possible! I would love to push the boundaries of creating and presenting work in collaboration with scientists, activists, digital artists, and progressive galleries. Also, I would love to curate an underground exhibition — and create visuals for cigarette packaging!
Any final thoughts for the Young Guns community?
My words and thoughts are never final.
WORDS FROM THE JURY
"I loved the work of Evelyn Bencicova; it’s so visually intriguing! She clearly has a sensitive eye for color and details, and her gray-pastels color palette gives the photographs a painterly quality. Evelyn’s images are super clean and elegant, yet her surreal and alienated subjects are complex, requiring me to take a second look, and see beyond their beautiful appearance."
"I think Evelyn’s work looks very contemporary and it’s great that she maintains the same aesthetic all the way through both her personal and commercial projects. She’s so young and so talented, I’m excited to see what she’ll do next."
Fashion Designer, Artist
Young Guns 16 Winner
“The first thing that I noticed about Evelyn's work is that it is so stark and clean. Her use of color (or lack thereof) in a very subdued way draws you into the subject and makes you wonder about the stories of the subjects and also the mind that came up with the ideas. I could look at her photos forever. Her work is futuristic and yet doesn't exist in any particular time. She has all the qualities that make her a winner, and in my eyes she already was.”
The Young Guns 17 Ceremony & Party takes place on Thursday, November 20 in New York City.