A world of images: Between painting and photography
Painted by a Lens
BIO: (JCW) Jens-Christian Wittig was born in Weimar, Germany in 1962 and studied in Dresden from 1983-1989. For more than 25 years, he has been involved in multiple international art, and city planning projects in various countries including Germany, France and Spain. Later projects also brought him to Russia and the Middle East.
After winning several international competitions, he was invited to Shanghai in 2001. Here the artist lived and worked for 18 years. His time in Shanghai strongly shaped him as an artist and served as a source of inspiration for projects as well as for his work as an artist.
Wittig followed intensely the rapid development and advances in digital technologies. Step by step, he discovered them as tools for his creativity – just like the pencil, brush and camera of his younger years.
In his images of digital transformation, he works with this new medium to create his specific and unique artistic world, taking learned classical techniques of composition and perspective and bringing them into the digital age.
The works of JCW at the onset and in print are photographic techniques. However, at their conclusion, they are no longer photographs, but rather transformed compositions. Brushwork and sophisticated graphic elements can be seen throughout the images. The resulting complexity, depth, brilliance and range of color of his images would be difficult if not impossible to produce through painting or graphic techniques in the classical sense. His unique and elaborate works are created through complicated and often lengthy digital processing -primarily through the use of a computer.
JCW de-composes the initial material, adds new, complex elements and re-composes – using lacquer painting techniques – to create these expressions in image form.
The images themselves are not important to JCW. For him, the true image is seen only by the viewer. Their imagination and fantasy, their personal interaction with the images and finally, the formation of opinion – positive or negative – this is the “real picture”. That is why the artist offers no explanations or descriptions of his motifs.
Some viewers have been so caught up in the intensity of the images, that they have heard music - an unconscious emotional reaction of the senses underlying the visual…
JCW photographs, draws, then works solely digitally and ultimately creates. He opens the door to a world full of previously unknown and undiscovered beauty - mysterious figures and fantastic scenery with a sense of the familiar. Seemingly well-known details and fragments are mixed with unexpected cascades of color, gold and glitter. Still other images veil themselves, disclosing their secrets bit by bit.
JCW allows himself to be equally inspired by the largest form as well as by the smallest pixel; he allows for the free-flow of vibration transforming images into intensely colorful creations.
Equally inventor and explorer, he works meticulously and intuitively creating suspenseful and exciting works of art which leave the viewer awed and astonished.
While viewing an image created by the unique and individual style of JCW, one might legitimately ask: could this image also be created through drawing – through painting? – Impossible. – However, it can be created in a world of digital processing which is the beginning of a new creative journey.
One must leave the concept of photography behind to approach these images. Photographs have another definition. – JCW explores another concept, another world, bridging the gap between photography and painting and in so doing, extends beyond both - expanding into new domains. The result is a bursting of boundaries. Fantastic effects are created, vibrant colors and unimaginable expressive details.
The images of JCW are powerful…magical. Diverting away from real association and into paint-like tones, the result is finely engraved graphic effects. Furthermore, the images become “Abstract Transfers” of the original photographic information – transitory images.
Blue, red, orange. The brilliance, the range of color, the depth of space and dimension – the paintings of Gustav Klimt or perhaps modern art; every viewer’s experience is unique in its own way.
The new technological possibilities allow us to “step over the threshold” into a new dimension – with new possibilities for personal growth. A “digital age” altered by “man-made intelligence” which opens the door to an extended reality. A world in which the unperceived becomes perceivable.