Published by Steidl/Galerie Fahnemann, Berlin. Text by Marvin Heiferman, Wulf Herzogenrath, Felix Hoffmann, Anette Hüsch, Joachim Jäger, Niklas Maak, Jan Maruhn, Sarah Meister, Thomas Weski.
For over three decades, Michael Wesely (born 1963) has created revelatory photographs using large-format lenses on self-made, long-exposure cameras. The resulting exposure times are extraordinary—not merely minutes and hours, but days, months and even years. Familiar objects often become only partially recognizable, opening up new perceptions of time and space. His images seem caught in the processes of both becoming and unraveling; what remains is fragmentary, comparable to the ambiguity of Antonioni’s thriller Blow-Up. Wesely sees his photos as archival excerpts from the present, inviting us to consider them as “visual archaeology” and to imagine our own stories behind their creation. The Camera Was Present celebrates his 20-year collaboration with Galerie Fahnemann and traces the evolution of his photography from 2010 to 2020.
Published by Hatje Cantz. Text by Joachim Jäger, Alexander Schwarz, Thomas Weski.
For five years the renowned Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin was closed to the public for renovation. Nevertheless, the acclaimed German photographer Michael Wesely (born 1963), best known for his long-exposure technique and publications such as Open Shutter and Time Works, was permitted to bring four “guests” inside the iconic building. Wesely’s four cameras, each one pointing in a different direction, were installed on the ceiling. Every day they took between 600 and 1,100 pictures with an exposure time of two minutes each. Edited into sequences of bewitching montages, this fascinating compendium allows readers to envision the building’s metamorphosis while undergoing renovations. The long exposure time is an aesthetic coup, for ephemeral, restless, rapid movements contrast with the still, timeless quality of the architecture, presenting a sophisticated interplay of identity and change.
Published by Walther König, Köln. Essay by Philippe van Cauteren.
Mention unusual pictorial worlds beyond time and space, or long exposure times, and photographer Michael Wesely comes to mind. Yet here are his landscapes, which look more like color-field paintings than photographs. Those familiar with the artist's signature work may find themselves pleasantly surprised by this book, designed by Wesely himself.
PUBLISHER Walther König, Köln
BOOK FORMAT Hardcover, 11.5 x 9.5 in. / 96 pgs / 90 color.
PUBLISHING STATUS Pub Date 3/15/2005 Out of print
DISTRIBUTION D.A.P. Exclusive Catalog: SPRING 2005 p. 138
PRODUCT DETAILS ISBN 9783883758497SDNR30 List Price: $32.00 CDN $40.00
Published by The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Essay by Sarah Hermanson Meister.
Since the early 1990s, German photographer Michael Wesely has been inventing and refining techniques for using extremely long camera exposures to take uniquely compelling photographs. Through the use of filters and a very small aperture, yet one that is standard in a professional camera lens, he is able to diminish the amount of light hitting the negative to the point where he can extend the exposure many thousands of times longer than we would ordinarily expect. Some of Wesely's pictures of the rebuilding of Berlin's Potsdamer Platz, for example, in a series completed in 1999, were continuously exposed over a period of 26 months. The results of Wesely's explorations are as surprising as they are beautiful. In 2001, as The Museum of Modern Art began to prepare for its ambitious construction and renovation project, a turning point in its history, it recognized in Wesely's work an unequalled opportunity to artistically document that project. In August of that year, then, Wesely set specially designed cameras in long-term installations in and around the museum, choosing his locations for the construction views they provided. Nearly three years later, the images are complete, and their pentimento-like strata of transparencies and overlays render the construction project's evolution in time as a dense and delicate network of forms and colors in space. Open Shutter accompanies an exhibition organized by Sarah Hermanson Meister, Associate Curator of the museum's Department of Photography. Included in the book are several images of the construction of the new Museum of Modern Art.