Never stop running. Big apple lover. Photography, because photography.
Based in NYC, USA.
Starting as an art director, Dörthe expanded her skillset to a multidisciplinary creative approach with a focus on photography and moving images - analog and digital. In her work as a professional photographer, she is documenting current events, places, people and culture in the five boroughs of NYC. With her real desire to capture authentic moments, Dörte tells deeply human stories with each of her pictures.
'Items. Is Fashion modern?' at MoMA, NYC (group)
‘Ignited New York’ shown in New York at Gallery “on A” as part of a conceptual store installation HotSpotPopShop
Supporting the non-profit organization ‘Ads-Up’, founded to help refugees, who were held in Naurus and Manus Island to resettle and build a new home in the United States
Visiting professor, Dörte has taught at The School of Visual Arts, New York and Pratt Institute, Brooklyn.
Your art is…
Love. Documentation (in the broader sense of the word) of the signs of the times, people and places. What I see inspires what I do and vice versa.
Name something you love, and why.
In no particular order…. The sun, saltwater and sand, because they nurture the soul. Running, because it resets my mind. Music, because.. music. My cat Oscar, because he is the best. Flowers, because they give us life, colors and fragrances. Travel, because new places inspire and push me out of my comfort zone. Food in various forms and flavors, because it connects us. Books, because they tell me something, I don’t know. Movies, because they can make me laugh and cry. My friends, because I couldn't do it without them. My family, because they are not perfect. My old cat Eames, because I miss him so much, he was the best, giving me hugs, when I needed them. New York City, because I feel at home and pinch myself every day that I made it here. My apartment, because it is the little cloud in the sky. Clothes, shoes, bags, accessories, because I love beautiful things. Art, because it challenges me to look at the world from different points of view. Sleep, because it’s essential. Kisses (from the right person), because it’s rare when the stars align. My cameras, because they are my paint brushes. Magic hour, because… the light. Dancing, because it helped me through quarantine. Make up, because a small brush stroke can lift the spirits. Morning coffee, because it’s a peaceful moment. Photography, because photography.
Which professional success meant the most to you?
Professional and creative success: When I feel that magic just happened.
Could you eat pasta for a whole week?
Only a week?
Analog or Digital?
Where do you go when you want to be with you?
Running. And the beaches of New York City.
Tell us something about your education
After grade 6, my parents followed the math teacher's advice to change the course of my education in order to preserve my creativity. Although interested, I didn’t succeed in science. As a result, I was bored out of my mind and my grades plummeted into the basement. It turned out that between grade 7 and 10, I learned the most when I skipped school. On certain days, when the boredom (and the bullies, but that is a different story) became unbearable, I decided to take my education into my own hands and took field trips to the local museums. There, I was introduced to the works of Erwin Blumenfeld, Duane Micheals and Richard Avedon. In the bookshop, I found collections with images by Robert Frank and Bruce Davidson. This was heaven! When I felt really fancy and I was flush, I took myself out for a bite at the cafeteria. I would return home at the regular hour, invigorated by what I had seen. In the evening, I would draft a note to bring to school and forge my mother’s signature. To be honest, I did feel bad about forging my mom’s signature, but believed that desperate times demanded unconventional matters. As my fascination blossomed, I begged my parents to ask one of their friends, who had a darkroom to allow me to shadow him sometime, but it never happened. I would have been an imposition. After finishing grade 10, I became an exchange student in the United States and I couldn’t wait to got to school, since I heard, there was a darkroom. Fortunately, the photography teacher saw my interest and took me under his wings. I spent every free minute on the street with the 35mm Pentax on loan and in the darkroom. He also introduced me to Fritz Lang’s Metropolis and the Koyaanisqatsi, which blew my mind then. Upon return to Germany, I went back to an art focused high school / college and on to study communication arts.
A question that moves you right now
Could I eat pasta for a whole week? Oh, and how can we create equality, peace and a protected environment? No big deal.
Since I was a kid, I have felt most comfortable with a camera in my hand.
What was the weirdest encounter, the craziest adventure or the most beautiful moment you experienced on a shoot?
As an art director. On a commercial shoot with a big name photographer and a rather conservative client. The location was a loft apartment on the west side, we were shooting through the weekend and entertained by premium snacks. My boss at the time was a short man with a large, but fragile ego. A brilliant salesman, he could sell you dirt in the dessert. The creative, however was seen through his lens and reflected whatever was going on in his life. Things were going just fine on that Saturday, though he didn’t seem to see it that way and believed, he needed to shake things up. The client present, me doing my thing, he sits in a lounge chair on the side, wearing a sweat-pants look and some Jordan’s that had seen better days. Of the corner of my eye, I see him make a gesture and thought: ’This is not going to be good..’ Sure enough. He jumps up, drops his pants, runs into the set and throws himself between the models. Two jump to the side, one slaps his naked ass in a reflex (excuse my language). Photographer clicks, clients are mortified, I yell at the account director: ‘Do something!’ He says out loud: ”And that was the day, we lost our biggest client..” The boss gets up, still bottom-less, and insults everyone that we were too uptight and didn’t get it. For some miraculous reason, we didn’t loose the client, but I knew, I had to get out of there.
What is more important to you: Form or content?
What part of the human face is your favorite?
Where does your inspiration live?
In my mind, my library and my images.
What would you do if you weren't afraid?