Rosier Gallery is pleased to present the more than 70 large-scale photographs in Tom Jacobi's Grey Matter(s) from October 13, 2016 – February 14, 2017. The artist created these images during the twilight hours on six continents – North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Australia and Antarctica -- over two years. Hirmer Publishers released a book on the series, also titled “Grey Matter(s)”, including a forward by the rock musician and photographer Bryan Adams, in August of this year. This exhibition marks the first time Rosier Gallery has shown the artist's work.
Tom Jacobi’s Grey Matter(s) focuses on remote, mystical, timeless locations that have been shaped by nature over thousands of years. We’re surprised and intrigued by these fascinating images captured at such widely disparate sites as Namibia’s stark Deadvlei clay pan, Western Australia’s dramatic natural rock formations, New Zealand’s Otago Coast with its perfectly round moeraki boulders of Maori lore and western Iceland’s Krikjufell Mountain. When they slowly slide into the darkness of night or re-emerge at dawn from the realm of shadows, those landscapes seem like mystical enactments from some other world.
The time from dusk to dawn has fascinated human beings from the very beginning. We have long been drawn to the purity and spirituality of that colorless time. We hear that Jesus Christ was born and resurrected at night, the prophet Muhammad saw the angel Gabriel while he was sleeping and Buddha found enlightenment at dawn. While we often hear of striving for the light, perhaps we really are children of the twilight.
Colors simply are reflected light assembled and understood in that place within us also called “Grey Matter.” No light, no colors. By photographing these archaic, mystical places before dawn and after dusk, color’s overwhelming distraction is removed and only the essence remains. Isn’t this precisely the magic to which we strive in our contemporary too bright, too loud, too fast civilization? Tom Jacobi creates for us this special calming, reflective respite. Washed in these sublime, meditative grey tones, the planet seems to find peace, just like it might have done during that long time before our existence.
Tom Jacobi started photographing at age 15, was hired as a photographer for the renowned news agency Sven Simon at 20, and a year later became Stern magazine’s youngest ever staff photographer. In his seventeen year career with Stern, Tom Jacobi served as the magazine’s creative director and was appointed as a member of the German Art Directors Club. He also published the quarterly book series Stern Fotografie and founded the monthly magazine View and became its first editor-in-chief. In 2014, the artist started working on Grey Matter(s) and in 2016 the series earned him the Moscow International Foto Award’s “Photographer of the Year” designation. Tom Jacobi was born in Bonn, Germany in 1956 and currently lives and works in Hamburg, Germany.