“Expeditions into nothingness” The Empty Quarter 2014 text

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We all have such places,  places that leave a lasting, almost permanent impression. Very often it is difficult to define what exactly appeals to us so strongly. Yet, we find ourselves returning there time and again. For me such place in Oman, is the Empty Quarter (Ar Rub Al Khali) –  the biggest sand desert in the Earth. So unique that it defies comparison with anything else in the World. In Oman I could explore only a small part of this vast and often overwhelming space, which spreads out on more then thousand kilometres. I have made many trips alone, equipped only with a camera and some indispensable things: water, food, fuel and GPS locator. During all my time in The Sultanate I have visited many parts of the Empty Quarter. This fantastic place is very diverse, with many different environments, which have only one thing in common: the sand. The amount of sand is beyond imagination and it stretches in form of dunes  beyond the horizon. But it was not only the sand and a harsh climate that allured me. There was also incredible silence, lack of artificial lights or sounds, nights with the sky lit by million stars. All this created unusual surrounding. The lonely trips into this emptiness created perfect conditions for reflection and self-inquiry.

In the famous book Seven pillars of WisdomEdward Lawrence quotes prince Faisal sayingThere is nothing on the desert and no man needs nothing. However, nothingness there is only apparent. If you look carefully at the surrounding nature, it evokes a lot of thoughts unknown to anyone who have not experienced such amazing wilderness.

Most of these images were captured in some particular parts of the Empty Quarter such as Ramlat Hashman, Ramlat Gharbaniyat or Ramlat Az Zawliyah in the second half of 2014, when I could devote most time for exploration and photography.

The Empty Quarter silent, yet dangerous will always be a place for which I longed.