The city is large. The pictures are small. Los Angeles is horizontal. The photographs are hung vertically on the walls. A man is standing on the fence of an illuminated parking lot; he floats as a figure in a canal; hidden by palm trees, he stands on a chain-link fence. Each figure replaces the last; each picture confirms the last.
Each picture could also be the start of a story. But the figures in the photographs only become actors against the backdrop of the sky or in their affinity to the shadows. Or is it the city that moves through these figures? Even if you’re very light, it is impossible to remain more than a brief moment on top of a fence.
The works by Sebastian Stumpf walk a fine line between the act of narration and its strict refusal. Behind them are invisible histories of dwelling, semi-public space, and the power of the freedom of movement in insecure times. The photographs play themselves. Their figures disappear by becoming repeatedly visible; they surface because they disappear.
Text: Lina Leonore Morawetz