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(A play on German words, a composition of " spectacular " and "empty", as well as "flat" and "boring".)
" Here you can see on Saturdays who comes to visit on Sunday "!
This is how people living in the flat landscape of northern Germany describe the topography of their homeland. I grew up in this environment and was able to experience the visual boredom of the lowlands for myself. Where nature has nothing spectacular to offer in sight: some trees, a farmhouse, shrubs. Otherwise: flat surface. Extension. Empty. Today, when I visit, I often look at the landscape with a different and searching gaze. And with the question “What can you find in a (completely) flat landscape? Can that be photographed? "
My photographic search first led me to the Ebro Delta in northeast Spain. The Ebro Delta is characterized by two elements: the conservation of nature and the cultivation of rice. The cropping cycle throughout the year begins with the irrigation of the plots at the end of March, followed by the suspension of sowing in late April - early May. The harvest takes place in September, after which the plots are drained again and lie fallow.
Several photographs have been taken on various visits since 2018. For example, in February, when more or less dry parcels divided by small mounds of earth shape the landscape; along with the irrigation canals that cut the landscape. Now, in fresh February, clean air, pure colors and depth dominate.
On another occasion I went to the delta in August. The endless lush green rice fields now dominate the view. Add to that the muggy, stagnant air of flooded fields in midsummer. Puts a constant veil of fog in the atmosphere, closing the view off into the distance. Colors are muted, pastel. What a difference from the crystal clear atmosphere of February, which makes all the colors so pure and rich.
The answer to my photographic search that I found here in the Ebro: reduction, minimalism. There are many compositional mediums in front of me, wanting to be staged. Man-made cultural landscape structures should be emphasized! Quiet! And Light!