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In Brugge I & II Christiane Baumgartner transforms an image from digital pixels into a unique woodcut.

Christiane Baumgartner
Brugge I & II, 2005

Real or fake?

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Photography tells the truth, exactly as it is in reality. But is that really the case?

Christiane Baumgartner’s work demonstrates that even in photography a lot is imagined. Her work is about speed and standstill coming together. She selects monumental monochrome woodcuts as a medium for her video stills, combining the earliest and latest reproduction processes: woodcuts and video. Speed and the passage of time are recurring themes in her work. Time is also embodied in her artistic process, which includes the long-lasting and meticulous medium of hand-made woodcuts, with all of their imperfections and flaws.

A central aspect of her work is the relationship between the material and immaterial. The ‘original’ image is one of digital pixels which she transforms into a unique woodcut that adds experience and weight to an otherwise inexperienced moment. Compared to woodcuts, the digital video system is a calculable system. Digital information provides the opportunity for manipulation and makes it possible to produce endless identical images on different media.

With Baumgartner, there is a human need that is complex; her work is a visual space for reflecting on time, place and memory. No room for gloominess here, but space for the artist who edits the image dynamically.