Opening: 30. September 2014, 19h
Exhibition Duration: 1. October – 11. November 2014

Several of the more than forty glaciers in the Los Glaciares national park in Argentinian Patagonia tower up to 80 meters over the Lago Argentino and its surrounding mountains and valleys. The literally breathtaking majestic walls of ice are typical of this landscape that has hardly been touched by man. It was this spectacular setting that motivated Frank Thiel, fifteen years after his first trip to Patagonia, to dedicate a series of works to this landscape. Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz (1807-1873), whose studies on the emergence of these glaciers were pioneering, gave these sublime spectacular galciers the name “The Plows of God (los arados de dios) by

The series of photographs that were created on several journeys in 2011 and 2012 is both seductive and ominous, moving ambivalently between the sublime, indestructible character of these frozen, awe-inspiring natural formations and their fragile and vulnerable nature.

Strongly structured surfaces and a boundless wealth of details, dyed in seemingly endless variations of shades of blue, grey and white all the way to the wooden carbon hue of black, interspersed with endless lines and veins that look as if they had been carved in. A lavish symphony of layers of ice that emerged over 8,000 to 12,000 years, reflected in almost supra-natural forms, jags, ledges, cones, fissures and furrows. A sculptural formation of nature that is much older than any human construction can be.

By opting for a very large-format works, Thiel tries to find a way to adequately express in images the spectacle of nature, and so in Patagonia he ended up making some of his largest works to date, the viewing of which is a very physical experience. Frank Thiel photographs this organic architecture with the same sense of detail and composition, studying it with almost the same archeological gaze that he already put to work in his shots of Berlin after the fall of the Berlin Wall. He extends his artistic interest in images of transformation, ephemerality and transition of a rapidly changing urban topography to include the much slower process of change to be found in prehistory.

Thiel analyses the natural setting with an interest, very similar to the one he showed in his earlier series, for our habitat, which is so influenced by architecture. He obtains similar artistic results even if at first glance these new works are very different from the earlier ones. Thanks to their strongly structured composition, their sensitivity for the smallest details and their subtle chromatic density these new photographs show a great painterly quality that is already familiar from Thiel’s earlier pictures.

The exhibition at Galerie Krinzinger is the first European showing of this series. Parallel to the exhibition at the Seilerstätte, four of his photographs are being displayed in the new Park Hyatt Hotel in Vienna.