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Christian Flatscher

Christian Flatscher is a photographer and architecture student based in Innsbruck, Austria. Check out his work on his website. It’s highly recommended!

Seeking Magazine: Tell us something about yourself? Where are you?

Christian Flatscher: I am a 27-year-old architecture student, in University of Innsbruck, Austria. Currently, I am home at my desk answering these questions and being completely thrilled that Panda Bear’s new record “Tomboy” is online for streaming.

SM: When and how did you started with photography?

CF: My first photographic attempts dated back several years. I owned a small digital camera, which I brought with everywhere. At that time, my notion of taking pictures had sorts of playful and naive characters. I was mostly shooting buildings, details, people, things and sceneries here in Innsbruck and on several architecture study trips. In the following years, my studies in architecture gradually elaborated my focus in photography, so the approach to a picture naturally became more thought-out and precise, hence my photographic language and its compositions were changing too. Dealing with architecture and space definitely changed everything.

SM: Which photographers or artist do you consider have been more influential for you?

CF: It’s really hard to answer this in an accurate way. Of course, there are quite a few photographers that I really admire and whose work is definitely influencing my own in a concious way, but on the other hand, there are also scores of photos I see every day all over the internet, that affect me in an unconscious way. I think that’s more like an invisible and unimposing process of perceiving, but anyhow, it definitely has its effect. To answer the question, I clearly have to name the Bechers and Bas Princen in my first instance. I love their antiseptic approach towards architecture and sceneries in general. It’s so straight and realistic, which works for me in a completely convincing and effective manner. Beside these two, more structural and architectural influences, I really adore the work of Stephen Shore, Larry Sultan, Alec Soth and Joel Sternfeld. The latter I had just discovered recently, but I am utterly impressed by his picture language.

SM: What you notice for considering a photographic project is good?

CF: Primarily, a photographic project should be able to visualize the ideas and thoughts of the photographer behind the project. So therefore, the pictures (in combination with additional text if needed) have to offer the ability to draw conclusions to the artist’s main statement and proposition. The viewer should get the chance to experience what this special and unique mood, atmosphere, etc, that certain place, thing, topic, etc, is distinguished by.

SM: Really love your series “Urlaub”. Tell us something about this series.

CF: Originally, “Urlaub” wasn’t intended to end up as a photographic series, it was more of the ‘classical holiday-outgrowth’: taking pictures of things and sceneries you want to remember when you’re back at home. The pictures were taken during a 4-week trip at the West coast of the USA in summer 2009. I think they can be classified as a very individual and subjective documentation of interesting sights and sceneries I’ve discovered over that period of time. Retrospectively, I think these motives are representing quite well on where my photographical focus is lying on.

SM: Something you couldn’t live without?

CF: Stefanie; music; my glasses; my friends & family; architecture; movies; one coffee in the morning and one in the afternoon; leaving the house without music in my ears; my bicycle; soccer (more passive than active); post-its as an aid to memory.

SM: Tell us something about this series “Alpenglühen”.

CF: I started “Alpenglühen” last summer and it basically concerns the alpine landscape around the town I grew up in. St. Anton am Arlberg is a prime example of an Austrian winter sports resort. It’s all about the period between the beginning of December till the end of April and during these 5 months, everyone there is focused on making profits. So generally, every intervention in this alpine landscape – from small to big – is executed to serve the winter-tourism in this region. During the remaining months, most of these interventions won’t have any use and therefore remain lying quiet. There are changes to nature that will modify the landscape for a long time, which also will have its influences on the people and their living. “Alpenglühen” should demonstrate these interventions and their interactions with the people.

SM: When you’re not taking pictures what do you enjoy doing?

CF: Listening to a lot of music; going to the movies; doing too little sports and too much internet; watching too much crap on TV; studying and hanging out at university; spending time with my girlfriend; having beer with friends.

SM: In your series “Tanken”, I can see many gas stations in many different places. Tell us something about this?

CF: “Tanken” goes back to a little course I was attending in the university 2009/2010. It was based on Marc Augé’s considerations concerning “non-places” and their imminent loss of identity. I always had this curious affection towards gas-stations, and so right from the start, I was pretty sure to focus on this topic of my own. In a time where the environment is constantly changing and places of transit are getting more important, these particular places are increasingly becoming centers of our interpersonal activities and encounters. Everything is in constant motion, people are coming and people are leaving. Public space is expanding and the world is continuously becoming linked. My goal was to increase the value of these gas-stations in an aesthetical way to make them look much more interesting and meaningful.

SM: Which are your future projects?

CF: I’ve just finished with all the lectures and exams at the university, so the start of my diploma thesis is up next. Probably I am going to intensify and work up the “Alpenglühen”-topic with intent to create a theoretical and documental thesis. Don’t think that there will be space for any other projects in the next few months.

Interview by Andrés Medina
For more information about Christian Flatscher take a look at his website and Flickr.

Copyright © Christian Flatscher, All rights reserved. This photographs are not to be used as free stock.

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