The subjects of my photo series “Outside, at the window” are pieces of art exhibited in galleries, regarded from outside, through the window panes. Accidental passers-by would glance briefly at the art show inside, but they would also perceive reflections from outside; the façade turns into a frame. This is the instant and the view which I try to preserve.
By means of my camera, I appropriate the work of others, thus creating an alienation which is a magical boundary between public and private space: On one side is the street, where I may move around freely, on the other side there is the interior of the gallery which, from a legal point of view, is a private business space. The building itself underlies the so-called freedom of panorama, whereas photographing the interior is not allowed without permission of the owner.
The topic of copyrights is widely discussed, not only in a cultural context. My photographs could be considered as an act of robbery or piracy. Regarding the art work in galleries only from the outside, without entering them, for me means refusing to participate in the art market and criticizing its (capitalistic) structures.
The method of appropriation means to integrate somebody else’s work, leaving it recognizable, into one’s own. Appropriation Art tries to establish this quoting-while-preserving-identity as an artistic technique.
For me the very instant of taking the photo marks the starting point when the image of an art work goes on a journey, the end of which will be its exhibition in an new art space.
(Translation: Sabine Wolfrum, Laura S. Czeschick)