Truly capturing the beauty and culture of any location in the vast world is difficult to do. But to do it artistically – and concisely – seems almost impossible. But, the sweet and beautiful filmettes by videographer Oliver Astrologo caught my eye with because of their ability to do just that.
Absorbing the environment and the people around, he visualizes scenes with ambience, beauty, and most importantly with humanity. The first video to catch my eye was his “R O M A”. Capturing the eternal wonder of this city from the eye of a local was surely a labor of love for Astrologo.
It is his most recent video, he captures not just a single city, but an entire nation: “Japan: Neons and Sakura”. Using technical skill with artistic senses, Astrologo expresses a remarkably rich and intoxicating country full of contrasts – in just over three exciting minutes. The depth of footage combined with expert sound editing creates a true atmosphere – and certainly fanned my long-held desire to travel there. The bright nowness of the urban neon lights and its high tech culture was a beautiful contrast to its deep-rooted traditions against awesome natural wonders – as if Astrologo created a secret place, where enchanting landscapes filled with temples, trees and mountains overlap with the industrious edges of neon, high speed trains and robots.
Atmospheres are what Astrologo does best. With powerful detail shots juxtaposed with shimmering aerial views and scenic street footage, the cinematic stories by this Italian-born video artist are like haiku in video for their concise and gorgeous rhythm. He finds the visual symbolism of a place, weaving it with quotidian motion, and mixing the ancient and the now with a finely tuned sensibility – visual, audio and even color.
Astrologo has truly transformed the “travel video” landscape – his works are transportive, expressive and timeless.