Iman Ahimsa understands the nuances of fashion. The Jakarta-born multi-tasker has studied throughout the world—from the Jakarta Institue of Art to Amsterdam’s Academy of Photography—and worked in various arenas of the fashion industry. A successful designer from the mid-’80s through the ’90s, he eventually abandoned his needle and thread for a camera, and has never looked back.
Now based in Amsterdam, Ahimsa’s photographs regularly appear in top publications such as Elle, Vogue Gioiello, Harper’s Bazaar and Solitaire Asia, and his image “Two Become One” won first prize at the prestigious Trofee Fotogram in 1999. Of his transition into the medium, Ahimsa says: “I loved sketching and drawing when I designed, but now I wanted the clothes to tell a story and I knew how the story should be told. So I guess it was a natural progression.”
Ahimsa’s photographs are characterized by their striking colors and hyper-stylized setups. His use of dramatic makeup and lighting evoke the statuesque chromatics of ’80s fashion spreads, but the images are imbued with a refreshing modernity.