Lovis Ostenrik

I fell into photography by chance.
After finishing high school I had a strong interest in art management, however, without serious intentions, auditioned at a private acting school, and to my surprise was accepted. Even though not entirely convinced I started my training in 2002. The experience was vital to my further career path as it taught me how to work with people, empathize, read minimal gestures and mimics, and instruct positions, posture and movement. People, their lives and emotional expressions was to become the focus of my work, artistically and socially.
The encounter with Robert Wilson during a workshop for ‘I la Galigo’ was hugely influential, and I later received the incredible opportunity to work for him as his personal assistant. Traveling extensively with Wilson in 2005, I documented everything required with the camera, and he subsequently greatly encouraged me to turn it into a career.
I understood the power of a single image not through art, but documentary photography. Several photographers had captured my interest, among them Leni Riefenstahl, Jock Sturges and Mona Kuhn, whose words instigated me and my work: “Develop your own perspective and sharpen it.” And so I began to look intensively at people, taking portraits in order to manifest emotional expressions, exhibiting my first completed series in 2007 in Malaysia.
I worked both on the street and in the studio, which I prefer for reasons of precision and priority. Here I can control all aspects concerning light and backdrop, in order to concentrate fully on the figure. I start with the most simple solution and build more complex challenges from there. However, the question always persists: What are the most minimal means to work with? It beholds a simple concept of “drawing” with light, i.e. treating the camera equipment as pencil and brush, and letting outlines delicately emerge from the paper, starting with one line, evolving into planes and ... Continued at http://lovisostenrik.com/bio
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First Collected by

Suzan Hamer


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