In a small corner of western Poland, a strange and woodland exists.
This bizarre collection of curved trees, named the “Crooked Forest”, is shrouded in mystery and despite the numerous different theories that have been proposed over the years, no one truly knows what caused the trees to adopt this conformation.
"I had Salvador Dalí in mind when taking these pictures" Kilian Schönberger .
So what could have caused these trees to grow in this bizarre shape?
The weather? War? Aliens?
Here are some of the ideas proposed so far.
Some believe that fluctuations in gravitational forces or a unique gravitational pull in the area could be responsible, but there is basically zero evidence to support this bizarre theory. The force of gravity pulls objects down, not sideways. A slightly more plausible, but still fairly unlikely, theory is that heavy snow could have flattened the trees for an extended period of time whilst they were still saplings.
However the theory that gained more strength in recent years is one that proposes that the curves are man-made. This would make sense given the fact that the trees are very consistent.
The suggestion is that during the 1930s, local farmers planted and manipulated the trees for ultimate use as a construction material, for example for pieces of furniture or, more likely, ship building.
All images shown here are part of the work of German photographer Kilian Schönberger who drove to Poland to capture the mysterious forest in his aptly-named photo series The Crooked Forest.
Schönberger tried to capture this ambiguous background and history in his photos. “I wanted the series to have this kind of reduced aesthetic, no vibrant colors, no sunrays and no sun in general. The trees should be the main actors—a portrait of a strange part of reality. I had Salvador Dalí in mind when taking these pictures.”