I trained as a visual artist, more specifically as a graphicist. My interest in photography has always existed, but it was not until the beginning of the nineties, when it became possible to work with polymer photogravure*, that I began to work professionally with it. With this rediscovered non-silver technique I could combine the potential of photography with my experience of the graphic printing methods. The interplay of photography and graphic art became a new artistic challenge. – Most of my photographic works have been executed as photogravures on the basis of analog photographs.
In my pictorial universe I am particularly fascinated by big cities. However, these should not be understood simply as specific cities; they should be seen just as much as an interpretation of the conditions in which modern urban man lives. In the urban space one can read off aspects of the historical, political, cultural, economic and social factors in the city. That is why architecture assumes a central position in my work, since it creates the external framework. Against this background I have created series from European cities such as Rome, Paris, Berlin and Belgrade. China’s radical urbanization made it a must for me to visit the country with the most rapidly expanding cities in the world. The result was the exhibition Brilliant City.
The graphic portfolio and the photographic book are related genres, and my interest in both is reflected in three book publications that have appeared in connection with solo exhibitions. These were Tageskarten, 2000, Rå Rum (Raw Space), 2005 and Brilliant City 2009.
In parallel with my artistic work I am engaged in the dissemination and development of photogravure. In collaboration with Museet for Fotokunst as the prime mover I was for example a co-initiator of the major Nordic project “HØJLYS & DYBTRYK. Fotogravure i Norden” (Highlights in Nordic Photogravure), which consisted of a seminar and a Nordic workshop and concluded with a book publication and a major touring exhibition that went to the Nordic countries and the USA.
In 2000, in collaboration with the Leisure and Culture Administration of the Århus City Council, I established and equipped the Højbjerg Photographic Workshop, and since 2001 I have been its specialist artistic director. With this as my base I am continuing the work with alternative photographic techniques and graphic art. The workshop caters for professional visual artists and other practitioners of the aesthetic disciplines.
*Photogravure is a non-silver photographic printing technique with which one can print a photo as an original intaglio print. The technique, which has been attributed to both Nicéphore Niépce and Fox Talbot, was patented by the latter in 1852: Today photogravures can be made on the basis of both analog and digital photographs. The end result will always be a graphic intaglio print.