Ramon Dekkers (28-12-1971, Amsterdam) received a double BA in Social and Pedagogical Studies from the Amsterdam School of Higher Studies. Ramon started experimenting with photography after miraculously finding a semi-professional Canon camera in the street of Amsterdam in 1994. Was this meant to be? Largely self-taught, his interest in documentary photography developed during his one year visit to India in 1997 and 1998, where he worked as a volunteer in the slums of Delhi. A series of photographs from this period won him a prize at the photo festival of Naarden, Holland.
Ramonís interest focuses on the cultural and religious aspect of societies and individuals. He finds this interest best served in the diverse and mystical land of India, to which he returned a few times to shoot the photos of Doorway to Eternity (Mandala Publishing, 2005), which received critical acclaim. In his function as primary school teacher he developed a project with young refugees in Holland, who were all given the opportunity to make photographs themselves. This resulted in the publication of the book My World, which received a prize from the city of Amsterdam.
What the critics say: "The photography of Ramon Dekkers speaks of stillness. Even though the daily life of India is known as chaotic, loud, and challenging, the images of Doorway to Eternity show us a different India. These quiet yet emotionally charged pictures show us a place of intention, a place of devotion to the spiritual well-being of each person. It is with subtle and refined vision that these black and white images cast a spell on us all to look below the surface, and listen."
- Chris Rainier, Photographer and Author National Geographic Society, Cultures Program
"While he lists Sebastiao Salgado and Martin Parr as masters of photography who have influenced his work, Dekkers', in my opinion, also brings to mind the powerful imagery of the late Henri Cartier-Bresson. He possesses an uncanny ability to not impose upon his subjects, as if he were invisible to them. Clearly, they are oblivious to the photographer. Likewise, he is able to capture "decisive moments" and make pictures that speak volumes - images that will leave an indelible mark in your memory."
- Dr. William E. Ryan, Professor of Visual Communication at University of Oregon and author of Graphic Communications, wrote the foreword of Doorway to Eternity.
"These eloquent images portray a time and place, as well as a sense of life, that we seldom see or experience - a life grounded in devotion to the sacredness of being."
ó Rick Williams, Photographer and Author of Working Hands