The camera obscuras / Ultra large format cameras
The cameras I build to make my work are made by darkening large structures, placing a lens in the wall and a large projection panel inside. Both the lens as well as the projection panel can be shifted and tilted making it essentially a view camera. What I appreciate in these cameras is the possibility to stand inside the camera and see the projection real size before fixing it onto paper or another medium. This enables me to make use of the specific scale of the image and the extreme differentiation in graphical representions it can produce. I generally prefer to use the term ‘camera obscura’ to describe them because it emphasizes the immersive experience of standing inside the camera. They should however not be confused with pinhole cameras, which don’t use a lens.
My first large format camera – Camera obscura #1 – was mobile, I used my tractor to move it to the objects that i wanted to photograph. It was however restricted to a projection size of 2×2 meter so I decided to build bigger cameras. I started converting my consecutive studio’s into cameras (Camera obscura 2#, #3, #4, #5).