Christian Werner: Still life FRG—Inventory of Mr. and Mrs. B’s House
The photographer Christian Werner (1977 in Paderborn) is fascinated by the history of the old FRG, “this country, which does not exist anymore and has influenced us all” (Werner). For all of his projects he chooses different methods of investigation.
Prior to Christmas 2014, an old schoolmate asked him to photograph the house of his grandfather, who had recently passed away. A man, who reached the age of 80, outlived his wife by several years and left behind the traces of a typically provincial Western German postwar life in form of an arrangement of personal things. Werner photographed the house in only one day, right before it was cleared out completely. The snapshot tells stories about Mr. and Mrs. B.’s life, while at the same time depicting a part of design history and lifestyle in the FRG. The photo series will be presented to the public for the first time at Kunstpalais—with more than 40 selected images.
Christian Werner’s inventory is extensive and personal—the approach is not bureaucratic but poetic. He does not arrange the objects, but finds a suitable composition for every item. Sometimes he photographs the objects in close-up, cropped and from an unconventional angle. Another time he chooses a frontal and symmetric composition. The images are unmistakably connected through Werner’s striking photographic style. The characteristic bright flashlight, which draws attention to each objects, blurs the shadows and creates high contrasts and intense colors.
Image: Christian Werner, o. T. (Photography from the series Still Life FRG—Inventory of Mr. and Mrs. B’s House.), 2014