What is the purpose of The Truth About the Moon? Do you believe the conspiracy theory?
Not at all, no. It's a really natural story of about 10 days set around the landing. It's 50 percent about the words and 50 percent about the pictures, which have a wonderful lower quality from the soft edge paper. I wanted to be faithful to history but also to break the rules, like I show Stanley (the main character) smoking in the spaceship.
Is there an element of paranoia to your photography?
I wouldn't say paranoia but I have mantra, which is - "Surprise yourself and your audience otherwise you won't make any progress". My images look real but also removed from reality, a conflict between what you see and what you can't see. My guru is Stanley Kubrick. I used to photograph beer bottles and toothpaste until I saw 2001 in 1975. I quit my job the day after to explore the possibilities.
You have published a series of smoke photography. Is smoke very hard to work with?
Oh yes, smoke was different. I shot 100,000 shots to get 20 good pictures. It took three months to get what I wanted, just watching a normal cigarette. Some days you can have two good shots and then you have three days with none at all. It wasn't frustrating though, I'm very patient. I didn't change the shots much; I just needed to clean the shape a little. I used a camera that captured a 10,000th of a second.
Our current issue is themed around government. How is Merkel doing for you guys?
I didn't attach any meaning to her until I saw her at the last soccer event (World Cup 2006). She was in the stadium and I thought, 'that is not a person who can do anything for the future'. She doesn't want to have any new ideas. Our politicians are not active, they are merely re-active and the CDU party is very conservative.
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