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Stephan Hausmeister (UK)

, continuing internet series 2000 - 2008
Digital print, 15 x 12 cm, 2008

"The visual messages we receive nowadays through the television or the Internet feel transient and seem to be hanging in the air, broadcast from no distinguishable location and by no distinguishable author. Images, phrases, slogans, opinions, cultures and ideologies are wiped out in a moment only to be replaced by something else. I want my images to operate in that same ether and to reflect the character of visual information in the 21st Century.”

Stephan Hausmeister is interested in the politics, logics and mechanics of pictures, the question why and how certain images enter our collective field of vision and others don’t. He finds ways of interrupting mass-media visual reality by publishing work through a combination of live events such as temporary, targeted billboard displays, public art works and newspaper, magazine or internet publications.

An example of this combined format is his 3-day performance Walking Billboards at the opening of Documenta 11, Kassel, Germany in 2002. For this work Hausmeister re-edited and re-published imagery found in the mass media, displacing context and sequence and thus manipulating readings. The performance caught the attention of the press and media and images re-appeared in newspapers and magazines around the world. His intention was not to create an alternative reading, claim objectivity or truth, but to make obvious the subjectivity of visual mass media and the transience of the systems and technologies by which it is transported.

Hausmeister’s collaborative serial artwork Field of Vision, appears as both large-scale site-specific installations at significant venues around the world and as a continuously developing website. It explores the idea of an emerging trans-cultural space and how an individual or group perceives and constructs an image of another individual or group. Hausmeister assumes the role of editor, publishing a vast bank of subject specific images sent in from around the globe, following a call for submissions. Field of Vision: Beijing was held at Beijing New Art Projects in September 2006. The project creates a series of collective gazes, each one of which deploys a multitude of surface focal points collected into a single artwork and transferred to the web. It is an artwork that has no origins or basis in any one artist or location.

For this exhibition Hausmeister presents photographs of objects he has squashed in an old bookbinding press; for example a child’s tin globe, an alarm clock, computer components or a bottle of red nail-varnish. He sees squashing objects as the most direct method of producing two-dimensional imagery.


Stephan Hausmeister born in Nordhorn / Germany, lives and works in London / UK


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