Thomas Kellner - Black & White
October 11 - December 9, 2019
Centro Andaluz de la Fotografía, Almería, Spain
Centro Andaluz de la Fotografía
Calle Pintor Díaz Molina, 9
04002 Almería, Spain
“Who would have thought that so much wonder could still be created with straight photographs in a time given to digital manipulation?” Alan G. Artner, Chicago Tribune
Thomas Kellner has devoted a large part of his photographic career to the deconstruction of architecture. He defines his working methodology as a "visual analytical synthesis" where he carefully plans a series of photographs to create an image from the contact sheets. Born in Bonn in 1966, he studied art, sociology, politics and economics at the University of Siegen. In 1996, Kodak Germany awarded him the Young Professionals Award, for which he decided to make a living from art and photography. Since 1997, he has been living and working as a visual artist in Siegen. In 2003 and 2004, he was a visiting professor of artistic photography at the University of Giessen. Since 2005, Kellner has been regularly invited as an expert in photography all over the world, participating in the most prestigious festivals: Brasilia, Houston, Beijing...
Since he began his studies, he showed interest in experimental and conceptual photography, working with pinhole cameras, frames and prints based on alternative techniques, such as blueprint, salted paper and others. After a project on the German border, he began working on European monuments in 1997 using the contact sheet method and "deconstructing architecture as a visual language". Since 2003, he has worked on architectural exteriors and interiors all over the world. A feature present in his photographs is the appearance of seeing his buildings, monuments, multiple constructions and scenes photographed, separated, dancing, reminding us of the vulnerability of our values and creations.
Scholar, curator, gallery owner and journalist Harris Fogel, in an article about Thomas Kernell's work, "Breaking the Space", described his work and commented "... the images are comical, capricious, challenging and unpretentious. They convey a passionate enthusiasm that is also an adequate description of Kellner's personality. I asked him if he viewed these images as architectural photography and his response was that he did not; he wrote that, instead, “I use architecture as an object that does not run away for my constructed photographs.”
When introducing Kellner at a recent lecture in Australia, curator Alasdair Foster commented, “I wouldn’t say architectural photography is something that particularly normally attracts me, but the idea of architecture that dances, and dances in a particularly difficult way in which it is choreographed by Thomas, is absolutely mesmerizing, and I can look at his pictures all day.” I share those sentiments.
Architecture that dances. Buildings that deconstruct, reconnect, dissected by frames, twisted into unreasonable shapes, reassembled into yet another grid, and then printed with more than a hint of Cubism, trying to take something that is three-dimensional and flatten it onto a two-dimensional plane. Indeed, as we can see, even in this early work Thomas Kellner succeeded at breaking apart space.
Thomas exhibits individually for the first time in Spain. He does so at the Andalusian Center of Photography as a result of one of the collaborations that this center has been able to develop with other centers in the world through the network created as a result of the First International Meeting of Photography Centers held in Almería in 2008, in this case with Alasdair Foster, the then director of the Australian Center for Photography.
Centro Andaluz de la Fotografía. 2019. Calendario 2020.
Thank you to the Centro Andaluz de Fotografía and Fabiola Munoz for presenting my first solo show in Spain. Thank you to Alasdair Foster for connecting us and recommending my work to this wonderful institution.