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The Line and the Dot. Surreal Legacies in the Photographic Oeuvre of Odo Hans.

Monika Körte

Odo Hans’ photographic works show themselves to be inspired by strategies of the exposure of parts, of dismemberment and faceting which have their firm place in 20th-century avant-garde art. Hans’ partial views correspond to surrealist methods and techniques of decontextualisation.  He not only inherits the surrealist delight in the artistic autonomy and exposure of individual facial areas which makes his views look alien and improbable to us. His particular interest is directed towards formations on the surface, which is not comprehended as the subordinate expression of depth; the true seat of depth is found in the actual and privileged locale of the person. With his chosen edits, the photographer distances himself from disambiguating and homogenizing conceptions of the face, and approaches notions of the face as an entity or a structure whose wholly different geometric expansions and elevations has been possibly put together by chance, without any internal logic. “Compositions” is Hans’ name for the image details, which loosen the face-parts precisely from their “mutual dependence” which is crucial to the face’s impact and owe their surreal, dynamic momentum to the attributes light, perspective and macroscopy.