Benjamin Antony Monn

Benjamin Antony Monn

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Futuristic Spatial Illusions

Benjamin Antony Monn’s works have already garnered numerous prizes, including the 2008 Hasselblad Master Award and the 2008 Prix de la Photographie Paris. Monn has been experimenting with the possibilities of architectural photography since 2001. Details such as facades, stairways, and roofs of modern architecture. Modern architecture provides his impressive compositions with fragments of reality and offers breathtaking spatial sections. Monn uses the emphatic objectivity (Sachlichkeit) of classic architecture photography and yet seeks out extreme, colorful designs, which he puts in perspective.

His series develop through various techniques and sometimes simultaneously; in his works he borrows from New Objectivity (Neue Sachlichkeit) as well as constructivism and futuristic montages, in which he deftly celebrates structures, surfaces, materials, and colors through his extreme cropping. In the series Candela, however, Monn has not employed montage, as one might have expected, to create these astonishing architectural images. Instead, they emerged solely through the combination of extraordinary points of view and unique effects of perspective. Monn has mastered the multifaceted process of researching unusual locations, interiors, and exteriors, architectural structures, and spatial flight.
Attention to the precise details allows for perspectival tricks that play confidently with changes in perspective from above and below. The masterfully colored stairways in his series seem to resemble spiral staircases winding upwards at dizzying angles and often use the interplay of colors and futuristic spatial configurations. The wide, round ramps of New York’s Guggenheim Museum could have served as a real architectural model, though that one foregoes steps completely and twists more gradually. Monn’s bold experimental color concept and the sometimes tunnel-like perspectives in, through, and up at architectural objects, however, are more radical in design – virtually a visual rollercoaster ride. With his well-devised lighting strategy, which relies on the effects of both daylight and artificial lighting, he heightens the architectural models’ own attractiveness.

1978    born in Munich, Germany
1997    assistant to production heads / BMG Entertainment Germany
1999    assistant to film editor / Roman Kuhn & Partner Filmproduktion
2000    studies in foreign languages / SDI Hochschule für Angewandte Sprachen MUC
2002    work as a freelance photographer’s assistant to numerous photographers in Germany and abroad
2003   photographic training / Art in Action Fotostudio by Monika Sedlmayer
since 2005   freelance photographer in the areas of architecture, portraiture, reportage
2005    four-month photographic documentation, including the book project Africa by Bus on the countries of South Africa, Swaziland, Namibia, and Mozambique
    founded CANDELA PROJECTS
2006    four-month photographic documentation of the former Maharaja Palaces in Rajasthan, India. Portrait series of the Rajputen
2008     opening of CANDELA PROJECT GALLERY for contemporary photography in Munich, Germany
lives and works and Munich, Germany
 


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