Oct 7

Madeleine Altmann

Artist Reception: Wednesday, September 14th, 2016 from 6-9PM


Currently I am walking a lot through nature. Especially water, which is seen in much of my work. I read and re read Rebecca Sonit’s book Wanderlust and thought too of the traversing the landscapes on my mind. My work is also influenced by American naturalist and writer Henry Thoreau who lived and worked in the same area as me.  His extensive interactions and wanderings through nature led him to write Walden and A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (1849).  Much of my work is recorded precisely where her wrote his books. Living through the industrial revolution made him think extensively about it’s effects of our relationship with the natural world. I feel we face strikingly similar issues today in our technologically dominated world and much of my videos address these issues. It interests and delights me to exam the world through the moving lens. See it from different angles or revisit places during different seasons. And I must admit I am motivated by a holistic perception of the universe as one interacting entity. Which brings us to German science writer Alexaner von Humboldt, especially his work Kosmos, which presented a unified perspective in the studies of science, nature, and mankind. Of course it is not a coincidence that I have German heritage.

Taking care of the environment is also very important this work tries to reflect that not only in her aesthetics but in her practice as well. Altmann’s partner, Andreas Uthoff builds the installations that are purposefully made from recycled materials.  They used back up monitors discarded from cars to build this sculpture. In a way they arrest the march of ever changing technology by reusing old monitors. To reinforce that concept  the sculpture displays imagery that is in itself timeless, like waterfalls or waves on a beaches. It also allows the work to show case Nature's essence under the cover of outer appearances. Using recycled materials emphasizes using old and recreating something new. The

Altmann has been active in visual arts for most of her life. Starting off in photography she moved on to television, interactive telecommunications and video art. Along the way she has exhibited her work around the world and accumulated a variety of kudos including awards from the American Film Institute and Sony Pictures.

Born and raised in Brazil and England, she moved to the USA to attend Hampshire College for undergraduate studies in film and video. She went on to receive a Masters of Fine Arts Degree from The San Francisco Art Institute and a Masters in Professional Studies Degree from New York University, where she received the "Interactive Media Pioneer Award."


Dimensions – 65” monitor
Description – single channel video: Shot at Crystal Lake in Cape Cod, MA. Human like projectiles dissolve in motion in this beautiful and mesmerizing world. The ghostly immersions are graceful amid the golden bubbles in the undulating landscape. AUDIO: Splashing water