Kreuztal, Germany. From September 24, 2020, fine art photographer Thomas Kellner will be showing his work on the Grand Canyon in the Kreuztaler Kulturbahnhof in an installation made up of text and images. Over 2 million years captured in over 2,000 seperate images. In 2014 he photographed exactly 2,160 photographs of the Grand Canyon and put them together as a contact sheet so that he could create a spectacular individual work.
The station in Kreuztal was built in the middle of the 19th century. In 2008, the decision was made to modernize the lobby of the station building and to offer the visual arts an area for exhibitions that should be open for artists of all kinds. Now Thomas Kellner is also supposed to exhibit one of his fantastic works there and would like to present his first so detailed natural scene there.
The Grand Canyon was probably thought to be the work of a god by the first Native Americans. The gigantic gorge created by plate tectonics with its glittering silver ribbon of the Colorado River at a depth of 1800 meters takes visitors' breath away until today. The first records come from travelers in 1540. But it was only in 1919 that the gorge was declared as an area of the national park and put under nature protection.
In the 80s David Hockney devoted himself to the immense collection of rock materials, the lines which run through the rock walls falling into the depths. His unique work of art was an attempt to capture the infinity of the immense gorge and to depict the overwhelming silence of the seemingly lifeless landscape.
Inspired by Hockney's great montage from seperate pictures of the canyon, Thomas Kellner created an impressive work of art consisting of 60 photographic films. "A sequence of incoherence and deconstruction that leads to the reconstruction and creation of something that has never existed before, similar to a rebirth or a cycle, and has a new visual language." (cf. www.thomaskellner.com).
Instead of famous architectural buildings and sights such as the Eiffel Tower or the Brandenburg Gate, which the artist has swayed and danced in his previous works with precise shots and the targeted change in the perspective of his camera, Kellner photographed one of Mother Nature's most enormous buildings and captured them with accuracy aligned single shots the infinite expanse as well as the individual facets of the different red and brown tones of the rock faces. "And there is nothing left for us but to look at the individual image particles, as if in silent prayer, until we start to sway." (cf. Freddy Langer's essay The Grand Canyon)
Parallels can be found between the different layers of the Grand Canyon building on top of each other and the 2,160 individual shots that run in exact order. A course of time is characterized by the multi-faceted layers and the unique individual shots. On the one hand over millions of years and on the other hand over several hours that it took to display the incredible natural structure in all its details.
Just like the colossal, impressive Grand Canyon, the unique artist Thomas Kellner is characterized by various layers. By deviating from the previous motif of architectural buildings towards areas created by natural force, as well as the focus on a higher level of magnitude, Kellner proves his artistic development again.
The leporello book The Big Picture will be published by seltmann + söhne to accompany the exhibition.
Thomas Kellner – The Big Picture
September 24 – December 11, 2020
Kulturbahnhof Kreuztal, Bahnhofstrasse 11, 57223 Kreuztal, Germany
Kulturamt Kreuztal, Siegener Strasse 18, 57223 Kreuztal, Germany
+49 2732 51264 / firstname.lastname@example.org