sebastian lemm




artist statement
press etc

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"Five artists use photography both to record natural phenomena and to embody them.... Sebastian Lemm’s black-and-white shots of intricately interwoven tree branches stake out a territory between abstraction and representation. On the evidence of the work here, that’s very fertile ground."

Vince Aletti, The New Yorker, June 15 2009

Review: Transmutations at Michael Mazzeo
"...'Transmutations' not only contains some stunning imagery (my
favourtes being Caleb Charland's work, and new images by Sebastian Lemm),
but it also holds together and is presented so well... If you're in town,
"Transmutations" (still up until June 27th) is a clear must-see show."

Conscientious blog by Jörg Colberg, June 2009

"The tight group show now on view at Michael Mazzeo is an exploration of a narrow
slice of abstraction in contemporary photography... While I found all of the works in
the exhibit intellectually thought provoking... the two standout sets of work to my
eyes came from Sebastian Lemm and Chris McCaw.", June 2009

Dalton Rooney Blog
"The show is cohesive and the work is excellent. Of the five, however,
Sebastian Lemm’s Strata series stood out for me. His black and white images
are beautifully intricate and invite repeated viewings. I love the way the multiple exposures reinforce the natural patterns of the work. I paid a visit to Sebastian’s website and also found the images from his Schattenseite to be quite impressive,
and hope to see more of his work soon.", June 2009


Art in America review!
March '09 issue
solo show at Michael Mazzeo Gallery (click here to read).


NY Arts by Leah Oates, September/October 2008, page 9 and online


Art World by Paul Carey-Kent, June/July 2008, page 122-123

The New Yorker by Vince Aletti. April '08

"Lemm calls this show of color photographs “Editing Nature,” and he means it quite literally. He’s digitally removed the colors green and blue from large-scale photographs of trees in summer, leaving what appear to be snowscapes of fragmented trunks and branches floating free. With no sky and no clear ground, it’s easy to lose your bearings and experience a not unpleasant sensation of weightlessness. The branches and vines in four small photographs taken at night are illuminated by a flash, but they’re also digitally doubled or repositioned, creating witchy nests and tangles to snare unsuspecting nature lovers. Through April 26. " (Peer, 526 W. 26th St. 212-741-6599.)


Some recent blog posts about my work (2008/09)

Brooklyn Rail -- Enantiomorphic Chamber by Cassandra Neyenesch.April '08

Double Exposure Magazine -- "Editing Nature—An Interview with Sebastian Lemm" April '08

Artist Talk with Gregory Volk
For those who missed the artist talk with critic and curator Gregory Volk and myself at
the Goethe-Institut New York on March 18, 2008,


Time Out Chicago -- by Alicia Eler. March, 2008
"In one photograph, twisting tree branches form improbable patterns; in another, a tree gleams as if it’s been covered in radioactive slop. Sebastian Lemm’s series, “Editing Nature,” depends on digital manipulation,... A German artist living in New York City, Lemm offers a convincing image of a mutated forest in his large-scale Schattenseite #12, which, like many of his photographs, was shot with a harsh flash. Twin brown stalks reach upward while splayed grayish branches seem to swat at them in a skewed version of nocturnal nature photography... At times, Lemm’s photos are so slick they seem like superficial ads in glossy magazines... these photographs will shine some light on nighttime aesthetics." by Alicia Eler

Chicago Public Radio
Chicago Public Radio recorded an artist talk with (from left to right) myself, philospher Michael Weinstein and curator Aaron Ott at David Weinberg Gallery, Chicago on March 1, 2008. I was invited to the talk in conjunction with my solo show by the Goethe-Institut Chicago.To listen click on the image. A shorter video documentation will follow soon!


New York Magazine -- by Jerry Saltz March, 2008
Jerry Saltz reviewed the group show Enantiomorphic Chamber at Nurture Art that I am in but doesnt mention any artists names. click here to read

Art Moco--The Modern and Contemporary Art Blog
Sebastian Lemm ’s upcoming show features a body of work called Schattenseite, which means dark side or down side in reference to the process that results in eerie hyper-realistic photography. Lemm uses a combination of techniques that include 6x7 film, digital scanning and image editing to see his ideas become creations that are at once abstract and yet very specific. Partially double-exposed pictures become portraits of branches that are vibrant compositions with much movement and force. February 2008

Heart As Arena -- Saying Grace
"...If there's one thing that'll guarantee my visit to a show it's the work of Sebastian Lemm. ... This time Lemm's work didn't immediately grab me. After a second pass at it though, what he was doing began to unfold in unexpected ways. The artist's deconstruction of the natural is a thrilling challenge to the viewer. Lemm's manipulated photographs follow one of the best (and really, only) art rules: Tell the lie well to get to the truth."
by Brent Burket, February 2008

I Heart Photograph
"some interesting projects by nyc-based german artist sebastian lemm. ... and for those of you in chicago, he has a show opening at david weinberg gallery on february 29th",
February 2008

Someones Garden Magazine
"greening highway" edition #3, Tokyo, Japan, October 2007
my series 'traveler II' is featured in this art and culture magazine,
curated by Tomoko Ashikawa (Mokomoko)


Light and Lens – Photography in the Digital Age
Focal Press, 2007, by Robert Hirsch.
My series 'subtraction' is introduced among work by Edward Burtynsky, Tim Davis,
Thomas Demand, Mitch Epstein, Adam Fuss, Andreas Gursky, Jenny Holzer,
Martin Parr, Jeff Wall and others.


Cornerstone (visual art blog by David Gibson)
September 2007, "Locations of Elsewhere" by David Gibson
"Sebastian Lemm's photography series "Traveler II " is a double city reflected twice and split in half by the speed of light. The images are hallucinatory and seem like space age cities floating in the clouds.... When I first entered this exhibition, I was quite impressed by the variety of works to express an idea that is mainly about absence, or escapism, about worlds contained in our own which are rarely evident. It also seemed to be about the ambiguity of the senses, and the fallacy of logic in ascertaining truth through experience..."

Heart As Arena (visual art blog)
July 2007, " Complement" by Brent Burket
"There are some really nice pieces in the group show at Peer Gallery . I checked out the show when I learned that Sebastian Lemm's work was in it. As ever, Lemm's work was excellent. No surpises there.... Letha Wilson's sculpture reminded me of a 3-D manifestation of works from Lemm's Lapse series without the complications...."

June 2007, issue #84, Barcelona, Spain
"sebastian lemm -- abstraccion natural desde NY" by Pedro Paricio


The Village Voice
2006, "Turn Off the Set" on 'progressive coma' by Deborah Jowitt
"...Stillwell remains naked to assume a series of poses with Bradley (now also nude),
backed by projections of photos by Sebastian Lemm. In these, the camera strokes
and caresses their enlaced forms in such extreme closeup that you often don't know
what body part you're looking at. The artfully constructed pictorial reality .... manipulates
our vision and our responses...."

Heart As Arena (visual art blog)
2006, "Here And Almost Now"by Brent Burket
"...Over at 511 W. 25th there's a strong show at Margaret Thatcher Projects,
Landscape Re-Imagined. I went there to see Sebastian Lemm's glorious c-prints
and found other thrills as well...:"

2006, "Sebastian Lemm Update" by Brent Burket
"...his shit rocks and you should see it..."

2006, "California Dreaming (Still)" by Brent Burket
"Last Sunday I stopped at Pierogi in Williamsburg. I always make a point to look back
and see what they have hanging around the office. (Art fetishist rule #1: Never miss
the back room.) Hanging up high on the wall was a piece that grabbed my attention
and held it. I asked who it was and the answer was Sebastian Lemm. His work
was the strongest in a very strong group show at Bank in downtown LA and here it
was again, taking me down. I'm pretty sure that Lemm doesn't have a NY gallery...
proving once again that crack is way too inexpensive here..."

2006, "Downtown" by Brent Burket
"...A couple blocks away from Bert Green was a really strong group show,
SPRAWL at Bank gallery. At first I thought these C-prints by Sebastian Lemm
were paintings. When I realized what they were, it didn't matter. Lemm finds
the ghost in the machine of the natural, and exposes and explodes it's interiors...."

Los Angeles Times
2006, "Structure of human identity" by Christopher Knight, LA Times Staff Writer
"... Finally, at the nearby Bank Gallery, "Sprawl" brings together five artists who
work at the intersection of landscape and urbanism. Virtual space is a leitmotif....
electronic manipulation inflects Sebastian Lemm's extruded landscape photographs,
where feathery leaves are woven into cat's cradles and Rorschach blots...." and Miami Art Exchange
2006, "Scope on the Half Shell" by Steven Kaplan

Bilder lesen lernen – Wie werden Bilder rezipiert; DUV Verlag
2005, DUV Verlag, Prof. Klaus Paul

Palm Beach Daily News
2005, "Satellite fairs offer artistry, oddities" by Jan Sjostrom, Daily News Arts Editor

"Unframed First Look" at Sean Kelly Gallery
2004, New York, ACRIA news release

2wice magazine
2000, “Cold Storage” on t.s.e. type installation by J. Abbott Miller, Pentagram, New York

DDD Gallery
2000, Osaka, Japan

Der Tagesspiegel
1999, by Elfi Kries, Berlin, Germany

100 besten Plakate
1999, exhibition catalog, Berlin, Germany

1997, Twen, Revival of a Legend, Germany