Etta Gerdes

I deeply believe in the Feng Shui idea, that whatever you show in the mirror is doubled by doing so. This became the basis for my photographic art work: whenever I point my camera on something I make sure the view is worth doubling. That way, I get the most energetic pictures that offer joy to the viewer and make him feel at ease. Doing this I found the great topic of my work so far: "paradise".

I was happy to work on the landscapes of Cornelia Hahn Oberlander because we share a lot of beliefs about nature. I found small paradises in her designs, and she as well has the aim of giving the user or spectator the most energetic views.


"I do not take pictures, pictures take me" is a saying among photographers that describes my work very well. And when the picture takes me, my whole body is alert to receive the image. I use a Hasselblad, an analogue camera, no motor, even without batteries. That is important, as I am working very meditatively.  It suits my body.  I can hold it without a tripod. I use an 80 mm lense, which is the normal lens that sees like the eye. I only use the waist level finder  and usually work without tripod.  My body is the basis for my camera. I am the tripod. My hands bring in the right position. The moment I release the shutter, the picture burns into the film as well as into my memory. The camera is not a wonder machine to me, but an extension of my body.