Mediated Immediacy

When Waldorf talks about his photographs, the word immediacy always comes up. That is the core of his particular aesthetic, the motor of his experimental approach: the directness in experiencing and capturing an unknown, extremely fragile pictorial event.

The interaction between the triad of object, camera, and lighting is so complex that minute changes in even one of the parameters have an extreme effect on the resulting image.

Hence, for Waldorf, it’s always a matter of catching exactly the “right” moment for the shot, because no image state can be repeated or planned in advance. The unrepeatability of the event in the convening of object, light, and camera is decisive here.

The paradox thus arises that this staged photography is at the same time “moment” photography; the categorical difference between the two is dissolved.

Immediacy, however, only comes about because the medium itself, the equipment setup – that is, the combination of lens and camera itself – has an effect on the resulting picture. The immediacy is therefore itself mediated, making the equipment into the co-author of the photographs.


(Text excerpt from Dr. Peter Lodermeyer, 2022)

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Waldorf works in the extreme macro range, on the border to microscopy. The areas he shoots in his photographs are square-millimeter details of everyday objects.
That is the miracle of these pictures: with their view of totally ordinary things, they unveil unknown worlds of unaccustomed beauty.
In setting up his photographic experiment, Waldorf works with consciously accepted defects. He uses, for instance, unsuitable lenses, improvised lighting, excessive light sensitivity—and unquestionably with the aim of minimizing the personal control of the resulting picture and to let himself be surprised by the interplay between objective reality and the equipment setup.
Waldorf pushes the parameters of his photography so far that in-camera effects arise, or light reflections or diffractions appear in the camera housing, occurrences that would be absolutely undesirable in documentary shots. Indeed, his photographs don’t simply reproduce a detail of an external entity “objectively”; it is more that they result from the interaction between what is positioned or taking place directly in front of and directly behind the lens.


(Text excerpt from Dr. Peter Lodermeyer, 2022)


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