In Front of.

Photographs by Heidi Specker. Text by Thomas Kohler and Ulrich Domröse.
Snoeck, Köln, Germany, 2016. In English and German. 176 pp., 25 color and 43 black-and-white illustrations, 9x10¾".

Publisher's Description

Photo-based German artist Heidi Specker examines the circumstances and conditions of the portrait in her newest photo-series, In front of—a suite of 68 black-and-white and color portraits of people and animals, close-ups of body parts, or hands holding postcards or artworks. Interspersed with photographs of details of an empty studio between takes, the images draw the viewer into a dreamy and pensive atmosphere. The clean design of the modest, well-edited catalog puts these intimate portraits front and center while creating a sense of mystery and anticipation that keeps the viewer’s interest on edge. Heir to the long history of German portraiture, especially that of the modernist photographers Renger- Patzsch and Otto Steinert, Specker creates an atmosphere that takes her portraits one step further to reveal the power structures and interdependencies between photographer and model during a sitting. With a preface by Thomas Kohler and a brief essay on the artist’s technique by Ulrich Domröse.

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