The series Camera Obscura contains a number of features characteristic of the art of Luzia Simons: Memories of early silent films with their typical, underdeveloped approach to the handling of light, with which only a segment of any given scene could be illuminated, and the dramatic constrasting of light and shadow to create the effect of bodies growing forth from shadow into the light. Luzia Simons makes deliberate use of a device reminiscent of the pin-hole camera, a photographic technique whose origins lie in the archeological realm of the early years of photography, purposefully exploiting its particular conceptual and aesthetic qualities. The “surrealistic” medium of photography already fragments reality par excellence. The pin-hole camera technique heightens the effect by focusing the view and the light on a single detail. Body parts but also plants and fruits are enveloped in Carravagesque darkness only to be brought dramatically to the fore by light. Luzia Simons establishes links in her photographs between the forms of plants and fruits and those of the human body. The ripe skin of the fruits stretches over its flesh – and such revealing, suggestive language is also characteristic of Luzia Simon’s deliberately fashioned analogies to the human body. Regardless of the object upon which it is fixed, this photographer’s gaze is always conditioned by the desire to take erotic possession of the world.
text by Peter Weiermair