Centa Schumacher Centa Schumacher


Artist's Statement

Uninterested in what the camera can do as a factual recording device, I work with a homemade lens assembled from vintage camera elements, creating a tool that distorts light and perspective. I don't care about what is real. I don't care about capturing the world around me. I care about what is lying there unseen, what is waiting and unknown, and what is willing to reveal itself to me so long as I am patient enough. However, because my work has been shot with a camera, it still remains rooted in physical phenomena that, in one way or another, actually existed in front of the lens. This creates a tentative line back to the experienced world--a thread that can be followed from the abstraction presented in the imagery back to lived reality.

I view this tool I’ve made as an intermediary between the material world and the spiritual. Using abstraction and luminance, my work invokes the same sense of transcendence that can be found while deep underwater or in viewing images of outer space. I see my practice as a way to transform the mundane lived experience into something elevated and unrecognizable. I use my photographic work to create spaces that feel out of the ordinary in order to pull the viewer away from their current reality and into a new awareness.

As a whole this work is about disparate parts fusing and falling apart again, things arriving and departing over and over--internally, externally, personally, cosmically, psychically. Matter is neither created nor destroyed, but it constantly changes. Bold and bright shapes cut through the darkness, only to give way to small specks of light in the void. Coalescing, disintegrating, and coming together again, everything is continuously brand new but consistently made of the same material as before.