The German photographer Floris Neusüss has been a pioneer in camera-less photography since 1954. He has explored the technical and visual possibilities of the photogram, pushing the technique to create a groundbreaking body of innovative work. He initially came into the public eye in the 1960s with his Körperfotogramms or “nudograms,” photograms of nude women. These images of ethereal silhouettes in graceful poses were created by laying models on photographic paper. More recent work includes his Nachtstücke (Night Pieces) created outside at night, often in a garden, by exposing photographic paper to lightning or to an electric flash. The resulting images of ghostly leaves and shrubbery are wind tossed and speckled with dew, reflecting the outdoor conditions of their production. Hovering between abstraction and representation, these pieces are portraits of the mysterious natural world at night.
Neusüss was born in 1937 in Remscheid Lennep, Germany, and studied at Werkkunstschule in Wuppertal, the Bayerische Staatslehranstalt für Photographie in Munich, and the Hochschule für bildende Künste in Berlin. He has shown internationally over the past fifty years, including exhibitions at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Denver Art Museum, and the Art Institute of Chicago. In 2014, his work will be included in an exhibition at the International Center of Photography in New York.
Several monographs on Neusüss’s work have been published, and he was a subject of an expansive illustrated volume produced in conjunction with a 2010-11 Victoria and Albert exhibition on the work of five camera-less photographers. The J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Museum of Fine Arts Houston are among the institutions that include his work in their permanent collections.
Neusüss lives and works in Kassel, Germany.