To many, time and space are abstract concepts, in Kantian terms, ideal structures outside of which existence is unimaginable. But time and space for the architect have a very different meaning.
Walter Niedermayr is notable for his investigation of space "as a reality occupied and shaped by man". For most architects time and space are concrete and malleable, capable of being determined, defined, and structured. Viewed from the perspective of human facticity, they are subject to being shaped in ways that can provide refuge, manifest strength, inspire creativity, and instill hope.
The architectural photographer should be no less connected to this rich and concrete view of space, time, and existence. Just like the architect who must engage with their subject matter on an existential level, so must the architectural photographer capture the fruit of this engagement in such a way that the emotive content is expressed undiminished. This is the "art" of photography that extends well beyond the application of technique.
Whether urban or rural, commercial or residential, organic or geometric, the fabric of the built environment is constantly in flux. Innovative technologies and materials create new opportunities changing the ways structures are imagined and brought to life. Shifting social, political, and environmental conditions set new boundaries and new challenges for the architectural enterprise. Each generation of architects is driven to redefine anew how space and time can most meaningfully be lived by peoples across geographic, cultural, and economic divides.
Across this evolution, the architectural photographer acts as historian and chronicler, capturing in images structures as they are created and as they age. This body of images serves as the primary medium of communication for architecture's genesis, sharing the past with the present and the distant with the near.
But while architectural photography documents, in my view, it is of greatest value when it also interprets: when it takes a position, when it engages with the subject matter and coexists with it. In my work I aspire to this approach. I strive to capture the "feeling" of structures, how they are "lived" by those that reside in them, work in them, or merely gaze upon them. I often capture the social context in which buildings are created and exist as well as the entropy that inevitably besets them. In all manifestations of the built environment, I endeavor above all to uncover the human element, which in some manner signifies that the structures are integral parts of people's lives.
Although produced in "stills", my work is more of a narrative that captures the promise of a structure, the mystery of what's around the corner and of what's inside. The images are invitations to look closer and engage more intimately, to share in the time and space of the structure. As a result, the images here are less "illustrative" and more perspectival, even subjective. But it is in this subjectivity that I hope to uncover the true shared experience of the space and time so forcefully transformed and recreated by the architects of these structures.