Opening: Friday, 16.03.2018, 7 pm
Tom Jacobi will be present
Archaic and seemingly raw landscapes, magically glowing hills, rugged cliffs, graphic structures of water, desert, clouds and ice. For four years former Stern art director Tom Jacobi travelled through seven continents and created a focused view on different places shaped by natural influences over millennia with his large format landscapes.
OstLicht Gallery presents for the first time the trilogy »Awakening«, which consists of the series »Grey Matter(s)« (2014–2015), »Into the Light« (2015–2017) and »The Light Within« (2018). At first gloomy and mysterious, then cool and clear, finally contemplative and inviting – each of the three groups of works emits an individual atmosphere, which Jacobi deliberately produces and consistently pursues using only natural light.
For »Grey Matter(s)« Jacobi photographed different places in Africa, North and South America, Australia, Europe, New Zeeland, Antarctica and Iceland. The countries he travelled are as diverse as the motifs: ice crystals glistening like diamonds on a beach in Iceland, a rock formation in Vågsøy in Norway looks like a creature from a science fiction movie, a lone tree lushly grows in the Arizona desert. What they have in common is the mood; all shots were taken during the twilight hour, a short period of time between night and sunrise: the first morning light already illuminates the landscape, but doesn’t colour it yet. This eschewal of colour and the reduction to form creates the defining mood of Jacobi’s first series, of a world in mystical grey.
Almost primordial, unpolished – this is how the subjects of the two following series, never presented before, appear. While »Into The Light« shows deserted landscapes all in white, pervaded by the delicate outlines of reflections and bright silhouettes in clear light, in »The Light Within« Jacobi’s gaze circles around two naked people. The two yogis, whom he staged in the vast Chile landscape, are surrounded by a transcendent atmosphere in warm earth tones.
With his trilogy Tom Jacobi has created an homage to nature and planet Earth, his style and approach are putting him in the tradition of landscape photography by Ansel Adams or Sebastião Salgado. Although colour is mostly excluded from his work, Jacobi finds countless nuances within the spectra of grey, white and bronze to form a cosmos, which he himself de-scribes as an »achromatic colour world«. The photographer also ties »Awakening« to a spiritual narrative: while part one and two represent aspiration for enlightenment, the artist sees an end to this pursuit in the third series, when he moves the source of knowledge within the protagonists.
The photographs are archival pigment prints available as limited edition in two formats. For any purchase enquiries please refer to Corina Lueger: email@example.com
Tom Jacobi was born in 1956 in Bonn und grew up in Washington, D.C. and in Schleswig-Holstein. After studying law, his photographic career started in 1976 in the genre of portrait photography, whereby his focus was on portraying leading German politicians, including Willy Brandt, Helmut Schmidt and Helmut Kohl. The following year was the starting point of his long career at Stern, for which Jacobi worked first as a photographer until 1986. In total he created 29 cover pictures for the magazine and won for his influential work several Art Directors Club awards. During the following 14 years Tom Jacobi worked as a freelance photographer for such magazines as New York Times Magazine, Amica and The New Yorker, before he returned to Stern in 2000 as Art Director and member of the editorial board. His exhibition »Where God Resides« was presented internationally and the photobook of the same title quickly became a bestseller. In 2005 Jacobi founded the magazine View, for which he worked until 2008 as editor-in-chief. Since then Tom Jacobi has been pursuing his artistic career. He lives and works in Hamburg.