Wolfgang Zurborn


Wolfgang Zurborn has an exhibit going up at Haus der Photographie, Deichtorhallen Hamburg.

I really like the surreal way the planes in these images work.  These are done in such a way you are constantly doubting what is real and what isn’t.


Interesting use of pastel colours too.


From the artists statement:

“Drift” is representing a way of seeing the fractured modern world in its overlapping images and contexts. I am interested in finding the sublime in the ridiculous condition of modern life with a Dadaist awareness of the found object. With a surrealist sense of humour I am creating a collision montage of juxtaposed, multi-layered images combined on a single picture plane. Disconnected from the purely functional sense our every-day surrounding appears in a much more sensual way.


Reading that, seems to fit pretty well with what I’m trying to do! Which is maybe why I feel so drawn to these. I must admit to being almost overawed by the apparent effortless ease.

Also interesting how the  colour palette has changed from a previous series..


It is also well worth downloading some of the texts available on the website of discussions of his work…

he has posed a philosophical question by
means of photography: How far is it possible for a subject in the digital age to attain individual
cognition and performance in an everyday public context?
Everyday worlds and the worlds of images dialectically merge in the subject’s mind: views of
the perpetually changing Lebenswelt are unrecognizably bound to the omnipresent pictures
from the mass media.
To Zurborn, traffic terminals, concert fields, stadiums, shopping malls, business and
entertainment parks are the zones the media invade, where the relation-ship between man and
public space take on new aggregate states of individual cognition and action.

These are things that concern a lot of us, but his implementation of these concerns is unique IMO.


An earlier project from 1996, used a technique I tried a while back


But he managed to fragment the world in ways I wasn’t doing. The vertical rather than horizontal arrangements don’t allow for the graphic complexity I was trying for,  but the resultant fragmentation serves just as well. Very nice. Certainly stuff I’d buy if I was buying art instead of selling it!

4 thoughts on “Wolfgang Zurborn”

  1. Am I right in thinking that the apparent distortions in aspect ratio are intentional — photos 1,3, and 4 for example?

    I’m reading John Richardson’s Picasso biography right now, volume 2, 1909 – 11, the ‘discovery’ of cubism. I like his assertion that cubism opened the doors for much of the other innovation that was to take place subsequently in the twentieth century. And, of course, being a photographer, I’m thinking about and looking for similar sorts of dynamics that, in one way or an other, break away from the built in realism of the medium — both the physics of it and the psychological/social stances.

  2. I go back to that period for inspiration a lot Ed, in music too. I’ve not done anything to the aspect rations so they are as they are!

  3. I purchased the book Drift and am enjoying it quite alot after seeing it on your website. I am encouraged to try a few 2- or 3-photo sequences as a result. There is an allure there that is absent in most the single images. BTW, I purchased two of your photos (one is a sequence) when you were selling and it is on the wall above my Epson printer. beautiful!

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