Bio­gra­phy

The pic­to­rial per­cep­tion of our cities is pre­do­mi­nantly based on urban focal points, like his­to­ri­cally signi­fi­cant archi­tec­tu­ral monu­ments, public squa­res, and streets, even topo­gra­phi­cal fea­tures. Howe­ver, a sin­gle, non­de­script apart­ment buil­ding, an inte­rior cour­tyard, or a hete­ro­ge­neous ensem­ble of archi­tec­tu­ral ele­ments all initi­ally resist a direct aes­the­tic con­tem­pla­tion. It is exactly these “unre­mar­ka­ble loca­ti­ons”- the title of the works in his port­fo­lio — that vali­date the inte­rests of pho­to­gra­pher and desi­gner Ste­fan Schu­ma­cher (born 1960). Based on the Becher-influenced Düs­sel­dorf School of Pho­to­gra­phy, Schu­ma­cher initi­ally approa­ches the sub­jects of his inte­rest in a descrip­tive man­ner. An influ­ence of the “puri­fied” motif is evi­dent by the lack of people, vehi­cles, or signs. In addi­tion, the light is always dim and wit­hout any shadows. In this way, a win­dow into rea­lity is trans­fer­red into a ste­rile arti­fi­cia­lity that cle­arly stres­ses its struc­tu­ral rela­ti­onships and then enab­les the actual con­sti­tu­tion of the sub­ject in the first place: sur­faces, ste­reo­me­tric forms, and par­ti­cu­lar struc­tures join toge­ther into the abstract­ness of the over­all com­po­si­tion. There is alter­na­tion bet­ween airy spaces, sta­cked, staccato-like tower­ing pedi­ments, or ornately-crossed cubo­ids.
Only after this “second look” does a chan­ged per­cep­tion of the archi­tec­ture its­elf fol­low. It achie­ves an ico­nic alle­gory and artistic auto­nomy, as evo­ked by the pho­to­graph. Schumacher’s work the­re­fore pro­ves its­elf to be dialec­tical, con­cep­tual art that has deve­l­o­ped an inde­pen­dent visual aesthetic.

Cur­ri­cu­lum Vitae
Web­site
1960 born in Düs­sel­dorf, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
1984–1990 stu­dies of com­mu­ni­ca­tion design, Uni­ver­sity of Essen; diploma
1990– free­lance pho­to­gra­pher and designer
Ste­fan Schu­ma­cher lives and works in Munich
Exhi­bi­ti­ons (G = Group exhibitions)
2017 “Ins Bild set­zen” (G), archi­tec­tu­ral pho­to­gra­phy from Bava­ria, Bava­rian Cham­ber of Archi­tects, Munich
2016 Gems­to­nes (G), Ingo Seu­fert — Gal­lery for Con­tem­porary Pho­to­gra­phy, Munich
2015 “Ins Bild set­zen” (G), archi­tec­tu­ral pho­to­gra­phy from Bava­ria, Bava­rian Cham­ber of Archi­tects, Munich
“Wahr­neh­mun­gen” (G, toge­ther with Die­mut von Funk), Ingo Seu­fert — Gal­lery for Con­tem­porary Pho­to­gra­phy, Munich
“unauf­fäl­lige Schau­plätze” (G, toge­ther with Bern­hard Mül­ler) for the opening of the fac­tory photo gal­lery “sono”, Salzburg
2013 “Spu­ren” (G), Soziale Skulp­tur Mün­chen e.V., Munich
2009 “Ende ist Anfang” (G), Soziale Skulp­tur Mün­chen e.V., Munich
Exhi­bi­tion at the Supreme Buil­ding Aut­ho­rity, Munich
guest artist at the sum­mer exhi­bi­tion in the Wiede fac­tory, Munich
2008 G as part of the Euro­pean Archi­tec­tu­ral Pho­to­gra­phy Prize at KAZim­KUBA Kas­sel, Goe­the Insti­tute Sin­ga­pure and vhs-photogalerie Stuttgart
2007 Exhi­bi­tion with litho­gra­phies by Joseph Beuys, Soziale Skulp­tur Mün­chen e.V., Munich
G, Bun­des­kunst­halle Bonn
“Gebaute Umwelt — urbane Orte” (G) for the Open­Art, Gale­rie Jor­da­now, Munich
2006 G, Isti­tuto Ita­liano di Cul­tura di Tokyo, Japan
Scho­lar­ships and pri­zes — Selection
2011 Sup­port by the cul­tu­ral sec­tion of the VG Bild-Kunst GmbH
2007 App­re­cia­tion by the Euro­pean Archi­tec­tu­ral Pho­to­gra­phy Prize: My Favou­rite Pla­ces, publi­ca­tion in the catalog
2003 App­re­cia­tion by the Euro­pean Archi­tec­tu­ral Pho­to­gra­phy Prize: Urban Spaces, publi­ca­tion in the catalog
Sup­port by the cul­tu­ral sec­tion of the VG Bild-Kunst GmbH
Teaching activi­ties
2016– Teaching assi­gn­ment at the Uni­ver­sity of Applied Sci­en­ces Augsburg
Refe­ren­ces — Selection
AIT, Ame­ri­can Express, Bau­werk Par­kett, BMW, Demos, DETAIL, GKT, Hoch­tief, Hör­mann, RWE, ROMATRILUX, Staat­li­ches Bau­amt Mün­chen 1, Sto SE & Co., VDI, VDE, Velux, VIESSMANN
Web­site
http://www.schumacherfotografie.de

Ste­fan Schumacher

Neues BildPhoto: Bern­hard Müller

My inte­rest lies in the incon­spi­cuous loca­ti­ons of our cities that sur­round and accom­pany me on a daily basis. City squa­res, cour­tyards, and streets show both the indi­vi­dua­lity and arbi­trari­ness of urban deve­lop­ment: the inter­lea­ving and con­glo­me­ra­tion of buil­dings, the clash of banal con­tem­porary archi­tec­ture with his­to­ric buil­dings that have grown into exis­tence over time, and the some­time stage-like arti­fi­cia­lity com­bi­ned with curious­ness.
I dis­co­ver my motifs in a very direct and intui­tive man­ner; this fol­lows a period of reflec­tion and con­cen­tra­ted review, yiel­ding an imme­diate image or the dis­mis­sal of the encoun­tered situa­tion. Ide­ally, works arise that are not­me­rely illus­tra­ti­ons that dis­cuss a loca­tion, but rather the ele­ments of these pla­ces trans­mit­ting aes­the­tic cha­rac­ter that is deta­ched from time and space.
I use an ana­log 4 x 5 inch field camera that pro­vi­des me with a desi­red rich­ness of detail, while allo­wing for speedy and incon­spi­cuous work. With digi­tiza­tion, the pos­si­bi­lity to out­put Lambda or IRIS prints ari­ses.“ (Ste­fan Schumacher)