Chicago Series. 2017
The pictorial work called "Chicago Series" was conceived as a contribution to the Chicago Architecture Biennale “Making New History” in 2017. The work takes as its starting point fragments of anonymous and concealed architecture from the greater Chicago area and translates these into independent and “refined” pictorial architectural objects. Aerial photographs form the basis for the seemingly abstract and enclosed building views. The latter are based on screen shots of roof views, which have been edited on a large scale by means of image processing.
Detached from their context, the pictorial objects divest themselves of their spatial anchoring. Their original orientation and position is negated – the top view becomes the front view. Shown in a strict parallel perspective, the isolated photographic objects are reduced to two-dimensional pictorial figures. They are image constructs devoid of perspective, flaunting their abstract two-dimensionality; by denying the illusion of space, they share the characteristic freedom of media such as drawing or painting. Thus, the composition of the pictorial figures might evoke the genre of abstract color field painting, the difference being that photographic material was used instead of the application of paint. Their characteristic tonality and coloring are intimately linked with Chicago.
Fourteen pictures from the series were shown in the exhibition curated by Jesús Vassallo in the Michigan Ave Gallery of the Chicago Cultural Center during the Architecture Biennale Chicago 2017. In 2018, four images from the Chicago Series have been integrated into the collection of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) and five images have been included into the collection of the Museums of Contemporary Photography Chicago (MoCP).
Images & Captions
Writings & Reviews
Schaerer, P. (2017, October). Das Besondere im Banalen [Cyrill Schmidiger, Interviewer. On the occasion of the Chicago Architecture Biennale 2017 and the work Chicago Series]. Archithese. > URL | > PDF (German)
Schaerer, P. (2019). Free your Imagination [Andri Gerber, Interviewer]. In A. Gerber & U. Götz (Eds.), "Architectonics of game spaces: The spatial logic of the virtual and its meaning for the real" (1st ed., pp. 95-110). Bielefeld: Transcript. > PDF (English)