In his fourth exhibition at the Bob Gysin Gallery, Christoph Schreiber presented digital collage-like photography in the classical still-life manner. The Vanitas-images from the 17th century warn the viewer about the ephemeral nature of life through symbolic-charged objects. However, Schreiber’s still-lives hardly evoke the moral tones of the paintings from the Dutch tradition. Instead, they remind the viewer of Shakespeare’s sonnets. Strong emotion flow through those artworks and open up dream-like landscapes, such as in the “Trugschluss” picture: a chopped fish head, carefully arranged on a silver platter, becomes a dragonfly. Schreiber closely examines the fundamental tragedies of life with humour.
In Schreiber’s work objects are transformed into something different – they determine a moment of metamorphosis. In the image “Zufrieden Klon” the artist shows a pumpkin between two half-full water glasses. The pumpkin seems unrecognizable; it becomes an organic form, human flesh. Moreover, the question arises as to whether the glasses are half full or half empty. Do they refer to identical twins?
Images define and structure the way we see the world. The constructive nature of images often remains invisible, but not in the works of Christoph Schreiber. He cites, appropriates and collages motifs from our western cultural circle. He playfully combines the subjects from art history with elements from popular culture.