by Ruttkowski68 on July 9, 2012
American literary theorist, Walter Benn Michaels, said in his 2007 essay, Photographs and Fossils, “It is in photography rather than in painting… that the most fundamental questions about the limits of representation and the limits of the critique of representation have been raised.” While numerous photographers have proven that point, Asger Carlsen is probably the most recent example.
Between 1991 and 1996, the Dane started out as a photographer who specialized in pure depictions of crime scenes. He soon discovered that he used his camera in an unexpected and unconventional way. In 2006, Carlsen began layering images on top of one another – for example, to create odd-looking faces with many eyes. Even he found his own images shocking. He did not show his work to anyone.
Today, however, the 38-year-old has come to terms with his unusual techniques. He is well known for deconstructions that question both the meaning of photography as well as the prevailing notions of normality and beauty. He is inspired by surrealism and the works of painter Francis Bacon.
Describing himself as a material collector rather than a photographer, Carlsen depicts everyday scenes that are rearranged to represent an “alternative world.” Yet, his mission is to make each image look authentic, as though it had not been retouched at all. ”Although it is obvious that I use Photoshop, it is not the first thing that comes to your mind when you look at my work. That is when Photoshop becomes dynamic!” he says.