: SELECTED EXHIBITIONS :
My work seeks to expose the world while we dream. In the same way sleep routinely removes us from reality, the night time can also assist us in forgetting a world exists outside our direct proximity. Because our surroundings are cloaked in darkness and hidden in front of our eyes, its frequently forgotten that all the life and energy of a scene are still there; I’ve learned that beauty doesn’t fade with the sun, it simply hides. My images are an effort to shed light on a different way to see the world. Instead of a blank canvas, I use a black one. Instead of a paintbrush, a flashlight. By painting with light and capturing exposures anywhere from 8 seconds to 8 hours on 4X5 film, I’m able to bring light to the darkest of nights; illuminating phantasmagorical scenes in ways our eyes are ill equipped to see.
When painting had been my medium of choice, it was always the German Romantic and French Impressionist painters which had my heart. I was drawn to the amazing pallet of color Impressionists could find in nature, and the idealized landscapes and allegorical motifs the Romantics had portrayed. With my images, I strive to show the world from a similar vivid vantage. The night allows a stark sense of negative space and the prolonged exposure of film spawns such a vibrance that I'm able to bring a nocturnal world to light in a way which we rarely see it. -gs
- writings from Dr. Norbert Wolf, habil., excerpt from Time and Silence exhibition catalog, published 2011
“These images are imbued with the quality of experience that the English novelist Thomas Hardy called “moments of vision”, moments, it could be said, of visionary perception, of time standing still, in which light shines on to a hidden world. A painting such as Caspar David Friedrich’s Wanderer above a Sea of Mist (1817) appears before my inner eye. In each case, the act of looking featured in the picture becomes an act of losing oneself in the infinite distance… The fact that it is possible to associate many of Suhrie’s pictures with Romantic landscape concepts stems not least from the photographer’s liking for unreal “presentations”, for profound, suggestive darkness, for things that are hazily veiled or for the night, plunged into opaque blue, for mysterious light phenomena, their natural or artificial source concealed. This kind of unreality does not function only in the yearning art of the period around 1800, but also works when Suhrie’s creates his pictorial worlds as a formal distillate of the Romantic idea. The loneliness of certain scenes in nature, places where people feel lost, exposed, in danger, also help to conjure up feelings like the moments of emptiness, infinity, the nocturnal. We can say that Suhrie takes his camera to places where the perspectives are enticing but at the same time blur. His photographs provoke those moods in which the outside world is filled with “glancing” intensity, opening this up to the “seeing eye”, the sensitive camera lens. A photographic artist’s works remain unique as well, remain “moments of vision” – despite the fact that they can be reproduced. Suhrie demonstrates this ability not just through the technical perfection of photographs, but much more through their composed beauty, which for its part enters into a wonderful symbiosis with the poetic profundity of his pictorial presentation, lending the silence visible outlines and a vivid tonality. “Every work of art is a moment,” is a materialized standstill that has taken on form within a process from which it is emerging, and is at the same time addressing. I do not know whether Suhrie himself would define his work as art, but I certainly do. I see it as a kind of pictorial art that is presented with a force that reminds me of this aphorism by Kierkegaard “Nothing is as swift as a glance of the eye, and yet it is commensurate with the content of the eternal."