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50 Kilometers, 30,000 Photos, 1 Picture - In his Wall Project Stephan Kaluza Makes the Invisible Visible

BERLIN.- For about a year, Düsseldorf based photographer Stephan Kaluza (*1964) patrolled the approximately 50 kilometres of the former sector border between Berlin-Schildow and Berlin-Schönefeld. After every metre, he took a picture of the now barely existing wall. He photographed the ghost of a construction which has ceased to exist in its physical form but lives on in people’s memories and ideas. Kaluza joined the more or less 30,000 resulting photographs together to form a single, long picture. A document was created in which the past and the visible present merge with one another in a singular, “timeless” visual realm. Furthermore, this artistic project functions as a kaleidoscope representing the changes in the German capital. Apart from a few remaining parts, the Berlin Wall was systematically removed after its downfall in 1989. New blocks of flats and office complexes were built on the premises of the former death strip. Berlin was expected “to grow together” particularly quickly as a city in these areas.

From 17 September until 11 October the 70-metre long Wall Project (complexe 16) will be shown in the extensive exhibition hall of the Künstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin. From 4 September until 17 October 2009 it will also be on display at the Felix Ringel Galerie in Düsseldorf together with Kaluza’s current “Bildstücke (=image pieces)”.

Stephan Kaluza’s Photographic Projects
Stephan Kaluza’s projects are based on the idea of photographically compressing complex physical and “spiritual” objects into a horizontal form so that they can be visually experienced. By complex objects Kaluza means phenomena which the human eye cannot perceive due to the extent of their spatial and cultural concentration. This includes not only landscapes but also courses of action. By joining the initially separate pictures together in an interrelated photographic realm, Kaluza creates the illusion of a single snapshot. Events that did not actually occur at the same time become “simultaneous”.

“Physical” Objects
So far Stephan Kaluza has concerned himself with the idea of horizontal compression in 16 works (complexe 1 – 16). This approach entails the production of several thousand photographs per object which are subsequently joined together in one unbroken picture.

For his last two projects the artist explored the banks of both the rivers Rhine and Thames from source to estuary and took a photo per minute. The no longer existing Berlin Wall was photographed in a similar way.

Projects to date: “Das Rheinprojekt (=The Rhine Project) (complexe 1)”, published by Buchhandlung Walther König publishing house, Cologne/ DuMont Verlag, Cologne, “The Thames-Project (complexe 2)”, Thames & Hudson Ltd, London, “Ko Phi Phi Don-Project (complexe 8)”, Tunnel (complexe 9)”, “Das Mauer-Projekt (=The Wall Project) (complexe 16)”, published by DuMont Buchverlag, Cologne.
Further information at

“Image Pieces”
“Bildstücke” is on display at the Felix Ringel Galerie in connection with the “Mauer-Projekt(=Wall Project) (complexe 16)”, and also at Galerie Michael Schultz, Berlin.

In his “Bildstücke (=image pieces)” Stephan Kaluza deals with narrative sequences of pictures. He takes over a thousand photographs of a theatrical event which he subsequently connects in order to create a seamless strip of images.

The textual and artistic concept is the starting point for every “image piece”. The artist composes the protagonists’ dialogues and produces the scenes and the settings as though he were creating a play. During the ensuing performance of this production, a centrally positioned camera takes pictures every second. The result is a single visual realm in which the separate scenes merge with one another.

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50 Kilometers, 30,000 Photos, 1 Picture - In his Wall Project Stephan Kaluza Makes the Invisible Visible

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