Jürgen Novotny’s pop art photography explores retro themes, incorporating analog cameras, audiotapes, newspaper printing aesthetics, and more.
Jürgen Novotny is a German photographer and visual artist. Over the past 30 years, his work has been featured in numerous galleries and diverse print media around the world.
Jürgen’s Unique Pop Art Photography Style
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An old Agfa Silette film camera
Jürgen’s father gave him an old Agfa Silette film camera when he was just six years old. “I started to learn how to use it and to wonder what might be possible with this tool,” he says. “Although cameras were never just pure tools for me. They were an inspiration, too. Photography became an important part of my life.”
Project ColorLimited (3 images above: Orange, Red, UNlimited): How do the various colors influence our mood, what is the impact of Red, Green, Violet? And what happens when seemingly everyday objects try to camouflage themselves and begin to merge with their backgrounds? This time colors, backgrounds, and sometimes absurd items are combined …resulting in shouting, contemplative, minimalistic, and often grotesque still lives.
A valve for creativity
Jürgen sees himself as someone who likes to visualize things and topics with the means available to him (currently mainly photography). He says he is simply looking for valves to let his creativity run as free as possible – also and especially because “artist” is not yet his main profession. But what is not, can still become 😉
Project CameraSelfes (3 images above: Polaroid 600, Meopta, Polaroid Miniportrait): What would it look like if the photo cameras decided to take their own selfies for a change? In this series, historical, bizarre, and beautiful cameras pretend to capture photos of themselves; in the background: bright, colorful, contemporary wallpapers. On the one hand, this photo series is intended as a caricature towards the ongoing “selfie mania”, on the other hand, it wants to set a monument to those partly forgotten technical marvels. Somehow a way to express their “personality” if I may say so.
Advice to new artists
… don’t let statements like ‘your works are meaningless’ influence you in a negative way.
When Jürgen started his project “CameraSelfes” after many years of photography and only minor reactions to it, CNN suddenly called from New York in 2014 to do an interview with him. “I would not have thought that this would be the beginning of ‘hype’. As a result of which my work would be featured worldwide.”
Jürgen’s work has been featured by LensCulture, Designboom, La Repubblica, Saatchi Art, ProfFoto, Le Matin, Lui, Playboy, Behance, HK01, Petapixel, Aesthetica, GQ, German television, and so on. And now hang in movie theaters, living rooms, and showrooms in San Francisco, London, and Singapore.
Project Symbionts (3 images above: Instant Madonna, Double Exposure, Shine a Light): I call them “surreal pop art”: Symbionts have been created as an ironic-surreal combination of the preoccupation with portraits of human models and the sometimes very human faces of historical cameras (the latter had previously been modeled on my project “CameraSelfes”). While the latter attempts to set a monument to these quasi-forgotten cameras and to caricature the ongoing selfie trend, my “Symbionts” replace real faces with the faces of the apparatuses whose task was to portray them.
To see Jürgen’s latest photographs, visit Saatchi Art >
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