Stephan Erfurt – On the Road


Between 1980 and 2000, Stephan Erfurt published numerous photo spreads in various magazines, thus establishing his international reputation. He created an oeuvre full of story-telling and poetry, at times melancholic and tender, at other times as harsh depictions of reality.

Erfurt often concentrates on the atmospherically dense detail; as a curious world observer, his work is akin to that of an essayist. One of his specialties is photographing in twilight, shortly before sunrise or after sunset.

His private and professional move to Berlin in the mid-1990s leads to completely different images, such as the famous close-ups of the television tower on Alexanderplatz. In 1978, the then 20-year-old Erfurt fled from the confinement of his hometown of Wuppertal. In Paris, he discovered the medium of photography. He then studied photography in Essen and, beginning in the mid-1980s, worked primarily from his new residence in New York. When the FAZ Magazin, which had become Erfurt’s most important medium of distribution, was discontinued in 1999, he simultaneously more or less stopped shooting his own photographs. A short while later, he founded C/O Berlin together with two friends, which quickly became an internationally networked photo institution.

© Stephan Erfurt, Leningrad 1989
© Stephan Erfurt, Alexanderplatz, Berlin 1997

»Of course, it all comes down to light. Obviously light is essential in photography, but Stephan Erfurt’s American photographs nonetheless take a unique approach to the question of what shines the brightest: is it nature or technology, the old or the new, the sky or neon signs? Erfurt—who had once aspired to become a sign painter before he turned to photography—uses his subtle pictures to show that, while there will never be one definitive answer to this question, it is posed in an entirely new and different way in America than in his birthplace of Old Europe, here clear binaries of high and low, heaven and earth are proudly maintained.« – from the text by Florian Illies

Stephan Erfurt
On the Road

Edited by Matthias Harder, Felix Hoffmann
Texts by Matthias Harder, Florian Illies, Jordan Mejias
Designed by Naroska Design

Hardcover 19,5 x 24 cm, 252 pages, 127 color and 32 duotone ills.

English / German
ISBN 978-3-86828-809-4
Euro 35,00

Including the book plus 3 original prints in 30x40cm (limited to 25+5AP and signed)
Euro 1.800,00
Contact Cecilia Ritter for more details: