As soon as I started to work with portraits of real people, something changed in my art. I have abandoned a lot of works I made before that time. Sometimes I am not sure if that was the right thing to do. Time will tell.
Train tracks going through a city are at the same time part of the city and not part of the city: a city is build for people, but you can not live there, you are not even allowed there. Same goes for high ways, sub-way tunnels and garbage dumps. I sometimes use these places as symbols for the border lands of our society.
A border separates and also creates order: these people belong over there and we live over here, and -according to some-that is how it is supposed to be. Certain thinkers have pointed out that Europe has the tendency to create places where that what does not fit in society will be banished to, like the terminally ill, the mentally unstable, the disabled, those with grotesque appearances and the criminal minds. These are the places where that what is deemed unclean, unholy, non-rational and unacceptable is expelled to, surrounded by a set of boundaries of their own.
Most of the times people are put there against their will. But there are also people who choose to step outside of the grandeur Europe/the western world has to offer, and they try to create their own place of refuge with their own rules.
He was robbed and died about a year after I made the photos this triptychon was based on. He has seen the first results of my work, but never the finished project. He is still on my facebook feed. If I send him my prayers in a direct message, will he pass them on to god for me? I’m not sure I want the winged guys on either side of him to be my messengers, but maybe that is just me.
I wrote the following about the piece in 2015 for an exhibition (translated in German):
“Der heilige Stefan der Besoffene (2012/2013) ist ein Porträt von einem der vielen die der Filmriss zum Lebensentwurf gemacht haben. Sind sie Kinder der Sechziger auf der Suche nach Selbstauflösung, sind sie kranke Süchtigen oder sind sie Schamanen/Propheten in ihrem Rausch? Ist diese Symbolik ein Gespenst unserer Vergangenheit oder zeigt es eine Zukunft? Oder was gewesen ist, ebendas wird sein, und was geschehen ist, ebendas wird geschehen, und es gibt gar nichts Neues unter der Sonne.”
Size: 80 x 60 cm @300dpi Pixelsize: 9449 px * 7087 px Origin: Composition made with photos, some 3D