Katharina Renneisen is a German visual artist who uses analog photography as her main medium. She works primarily with a large format camera and black-and-white film, maintaining full control over the photographic process from the exposure to the final print. Thematically, Renneisen focusses on classical pictorial genres like the still life, the nude, or the landscape and creates images laden with references to the history of art. Many of her silver gelatin prints are hand-coloured with oil paints and thus challenge the boundary between photography and painting.
Born in Seeheim-Jugenheim in 1978, Katharina Renneisen holds a Master’s degree in Art History, Romance Philology and American Studies from Humboldt-University of Berlin. Years of experimentation as a photographer and a printer form the basis for her artistic practice. She lives and works in Berlin.
“Paysage” is not only the French word for landscape, but the term also refers to the depiction of landscape in the visual arts. It is this extended meaning which underlies my ongoing project of the same name, in which I explore the French landscape with an analogue large format camera and black-and-white film. From the negatives I make silver gelatin prints, which are then hand-coloured with oil paints. My motifs largely hark back to the classical repertoire, which took shape in the 19th century when French landscape artists increasingly discovered their native nature as a subject matter. Photography pioneers like Gustave Le Gray or Charles Marville often worked side by side with painters like Camille Corot or Gustave Courbet, and a fruitful dialogue between the two media and their practitioners evolved. My works transform this dialogue into a synthesis. By combining traditional photographic and painterly techniques, I create a distinctive aesthetics: While the large format camera records the elements of nature in all their details at a specific point in time, the oil paints offer the possibility of interpreting them beyond the moment. Equally immediate and timeless, this is my vision of “Paysage”.
To view more of Katharina Renneisen’s work please visit her website.