Pauline Hisbacq


Aaron Wax

Artist Feature

Every week an artist is featured whose single image was published by Der Greif. The Feature shows the image in the original context of the series.

Andre Viking - Family Familiar

Jul 18, 2018

Through most of his life my father has lived on the wrong side of the law and I still remember clearly when my mother, little sister and I had to visit him in jail. During that period they divorced and shortly after when he was out of jail my mother told me that he was not my biological father. It was a lot to comprehend – suddenly my little sister was what everybody would call a stepsister and my understanding of the word family completely changed.


Family Familiar is a series of photographs all taken by my family members that have never worked professionally with photography. By removing them from the original photo albums and sequencing them into a book, I create a new personal narrative. A narrative that is focusing on the relationships between family members and what memories and identity mean.


Without adjusting anything other than the sequence, I worked with a non-artistic and private archive full of photographic “mistakes” and “wrongly” framed images. I believe these images tell a deeper and more intimidate story than I ever would have been able to portray if I were the photographer.

Artist Blog

The blog of Der Greif is written entirely by the artists who have been invited to doing an Artist-Feature. Every week, we have a different author.

“We Will Let The Ancestors Guide Us”

Jul 24, 2018 - Andre Viking

Next week I’m going to South Africa for ten days where I will travel to the mountains and meet with the man in the picture. His name is Lucky and he’s a local shaman. We’ve spoken on the phone and we’re going to visit a lot of sacred sites and participate in rituals. Other than that I don’t know much about what’s going to happen, but I also think that’s the purpose of the journey. I’m definitely excited.


It has been great to share some inspirations with you!

If you like to keep following: @andre_viking

Plethora Magazine

- Andre Viking

Plethora Magazine is a very unique publication founded in Copenhagen, in fact it’s an artwork in itself. Printed by the monks of a Hindu temple the craftsmanship stands out. Each issue is based on a topic often related to nature and science and is being carefully depicted through some impressive works of art and some well-written texts.

Nicolai Howalt – Car Crash Studies

Jul 23, 2018 - Andre Viking

Another great series I admire and want to share with you is the series Car Crash Studies by Nicolai Howalt. I’ve assisted Nicolai and he has taught me a lot. Not necessarily on a technical basis but much about ways to think photography and how to use it as a tool for investigation. This work challenges the viewer and their understanding of the medium in such a great way.


“In between confrontation and silent contemplations, Car Crash Studies is a photographic study of cars that have been involved in severe and fatal accidents.

While the car crash studies are typographical, and in some instances close to sterile accident report photographs, the series move between documentation and abstraction, confronting the viewer with the human fear of trauma and death.
Several of the images are vividly abstract and look more like landscapes than slashed up metal. Collided bodyworks, dents and cracks in varnish appear as highly enlarged details in the monumental works. These ‘color plains’ become the ultimate instance of beauty created from suffering, pain and destruction”

White Serpent, 2016, silver gelatin print

Closed Eyes

Jul 22, 2018 - Andre Viking

Symbols and rituals have long been part of human nature as a bridge to access what our senses cannot. Being a symbolic surface, photographs reflect in a similar nature – they take us to a place where we can contemplate the idea that mystery needs knowledge, and knowledge needs mystery.


I want to share some photographs from my series Closed Eyes and Instead of showing you the whole series I will try something different and add a short text to each photograph.

Holy Well, 2015, silver gelatin print


Samsø, a small island in central Denmark, is home to a well of oak dating back to the Bronze Age. Folklore has told us that this well has healing powers, attracting people from all over, especially the ill. On Walpurgis Night and Midsummer’s Eve, the well’s power is said to be the strongest.

Eva, Blind Priest, 2017, silver gelatin print


Eva is one of the latest subjects I’ve photographed for this project. I wanted to add a photograph that reflected on the idea of the title. It goes back to mythology where stories are told of people who lived without the sense of a sight could sense other things we couldn’t. I researched and found out about Eva who lived a couple of hours from me, she turned out to be one of the most inspiring persons I’ve met.

Black Serpent, 2014, silver gelatin print

This photograph is staged in a studio having a real black serpent form a circle on some white rocks. It is inspired by the symbol of Ouroboros, one of the most used ancient symbols. Depicting the infinite cycle of destruction and regeneration, life and death.

Rock Balancing, 2014, silver gelatin print

This photograph is my first attempt with rock balancing, which is an age-old discipline in which rocks are naturally balanced on top of one another without the help of other elements. I was drawn to this meditative practice that looks like magic to the eye.

White Serpent, 2016, silver gelatin print

Reflecting on the photograph as a symbolic surface I was interested in the negative as an inverted photograph, which made me photograph a white serpent on black rocks.

Fire Breather, 2015, silver gelatin print

This photograph is inspired from the element of fire and how a photograph only exists with the help from a light source. I’m often drawn to the oldest, most universal ideas, such as the four elements and light vs. dark.

Cup Marks, 2016, silver gelatin print

Cup marks are rounded grooves carved in stones and are said to be some of the first symbolic expressions made by humans. Their meaning is uncertain, but researchers have been interpreted them as a symbol of female fertility or a representation of the sun.

Kathryn Harrison – Half in Two

Jul 21, 2018 - Andre Viking

Family as Subject (3/3)


Last but not least is Kathryn Harrison’s series about her brother who suffers from schizophrenia. The series is a powerful portrait of him and his struggles. In many ways it also becomes a portrait of a sister observing her brother and how his struggles affects her and the rest of the family due to the unconditional love between them. Imagery like this needs a lot of bravery in order to be made.


“By definition, unconditional love is boundless. When extended to a loved one with a drug addiction, however, the side effects can be deeply toxic. At the forefront of my family work are these complexities of addiction, chronic disease, and mental illness, alongside their relationship with the human condition. I was recently discussing these realities with my mother, who is currently raising my brother’s infant son after both he and his girlfriend relapsed less than three months after his birth. We shared the fear of every disappearance, every phone call, every court date. My mother’s total gastrectomy was only last year but, due to lupus, her body fights any progress. My brother’s addiction and behavior prohibit my mother from necessary rest and healing. This discord ripples through my family like the waves preceding a tsunami. No one is left untouched—you are forced to swim otherwise you drown.


My family, and photography, operate cyclically. Naturally assuming the role of caretaker to both my mother and brother since I was a child, I struggle with the inherent power dynamic between us all. Can caretaking and caregiving coexist? Do they cancel each other out? What about love and death?”



Darin Mickey, Marina Berio and Kathryn Harrison are some of the inspiring people I got to know during my studies at The International Center of Photography in New York.

Marina Berio – Family Matter

Jul 20, 2018 - Andre Viking

Family as Subject (2/3)


Next up is Marina Berio’s Family Matter. I love how the printing process strongly connects to the themes in her series. Every guy I know remember those playful moments they had with their fathers, full of various emotions and always testing each other’s limits and limitations. A beautiful observation captured by a mother.


“This is the series Family Matter: Over five years the artist photographed her husband and young son alternately play, tease, wrestle and rest. In this series of ‘family snapshots’, the ballet of limbs captures the growing and changing relationship between father and son, in a recurring cycle of playfulness, irritation, anger and love, that is observed by the mother-photographer who is also the third point of this family triangle.

In mingling her own blood with the photographic printing process Marina Berio signals the unique and authentic nature of the ‘blood ties’ that bind her not only the two wrestling males but to the ‘blood prints’ themselves, which by definition cannot be reproduced without her.

The prints are of a small format (25,5 x 25,5 cm) that emphasises their personal, intimate nature.”


If you happen to be in Paris, this series is currently being shown in dialogue with some of Marina’s drawings. Up until July 28 at Galerie Miranda, 21 rue du Château d’Eau 75010 Paris, France.

Darin Mickey – Stuff I Gotta Remember Not To Forget

Jul 19, 2018 - Andre Viking

Family as Subject (1/3)


Continuing on the topic from my Artist Feature I would like to introduce you to the work of 3 photographers who have worked on series about their families and the relationships within. With 3 different approaches I like these series for being truly personal. Still they are told in a way for us to relate. First up is Darin Mickey’s Stuff I Gotta Remember Not To Forget published by J&L Books. If you collect photobooks this one deserves a spot on your bookshelf.


”In 2001, Darin Mickey began to document his father’s life at work and at home. Stuff I Gotta Remember Not To Forget is a portrait of Ken Mickey, who sells storage space in converted caves and abandoned mines throughout Kansas. We follow Darin following his father as he makes cold calls, watches television, attends meetings at the Masonic Temple, drives through underground tunnels, and drinks his scotch on the rocks. Mickey’s pictures deftly depict the feelings an adult has toward his parents; an unfamiliarity with the familiar, and the vying feelings of attraction and rejection toward where one comes from. The title – taken from a Ziggy bulletin board – implies both the ambivalence and urgency of what family means once one leaves the fold. As much a memoir of Mickey’s family life as a portrait of a salesman, Stuff I Gotta Remember Not To Forget is a document of the suburban midwest, in turns honest, ridiculous and tender. ”