Michael Höpfner

sep 02, 2010 - sep 24, 2010
Galéria HIT, Bratislava

sep 02, 2010 7popoludní

Michael Höpfner walks without permission through the plateau of Chang Tang in West Tibet. The image of purist land strengthened by ethnographic/ expedition’s/ documentary photos are changed in Hopfner’s conception not to “Outpost of Progress” but rather to country in decay affected by industrial culture. Colonial idea of the West about the absolute inhabiting of entire world map surface becomes utopia, here verified through crumbling urban experiment. Remains of postmodern architecture in contrast to moonscape with endless horizons function as ornaments rather than monuments of conquests.
Michael Höpfner returns to “place less landscapes” (Susanne Jäger) and by following his new wander he traces another paths, which are intersecting, overlapping or diverging with the previous ones. Höpfner’s diaries create cartographic /mental maps/ reduced drawings without any landmarks, which document the geographical records of author’s movement in “non-place”. The essential attempt of mapping “non-place” is utopian by itself. From the perspective of urban man, Höpfner’s movements in the space appear like standing on the same point.
Displayed series of slides are motion/ time/ space records of Hopfner’s wanders in plateau of Chang Tang. More than in solitary images, the intention is clearer in photographic series. (Christian Kravagna). Photographs arranged in filmstrips imply temporal and spatial evolution although they initially appear to be duplicates with the changed gaze/ perspective/lens. A fictional map of the place is constructing here- with the mechanisms of orientation guides, based on subjective consciousness of viewers- followed by redefinition of the stereotypes about the exotic image of vacant East.
Jaro Varga