Born 1984 in Nîmes
Lives and works in Montpellier, southern France.
ALTNACHT is a contraction of alteration and
Nacht (German for night).
As a child, Altnacht would spend hours watching the (night) sky, keen to learn more about what lays beyond that mysterious dark boundary. He was the curiosity-driven boy in town, learning about science and astronomy; from the basics right through to complex astrophysics. He would collect various broken electronic devices and dismantle them to understand their mechanism.
As an adult, his state of mind is pretty much the same. An avid reader and learner, his favourite topics range from space sciences to what humans build on Earth. He uses the rule of perspective and architectural visualisation to see/understand how they work.
In the early 2000s, his creations are either abstracts or organic paintings and drawings. After finishing Maths School, Altnacht enters The School of Architecture where he gains a thorough knowledge of applied geometry. Flying over the wall of formal conservatism, he uses digital imagery to create pictures – remarkable for their expressiveness – rather than raw architecture. In the mid-2000s, medium and media change: paintbrushes and pencils are out, digital tools and photographic discourse are in.
In 2007 Altnacht sets himself up as a self-taught professional artist and has since run several exhibitions in his hometown and in London. His unique vision contrasts against other artists from different horizons: film or digital photographers, still life or surrealist painters, countryside or city lovers, environmentalists or developers.
The CityFictions Series : Altnacht's creative backbone from his twenties
The last 50 years have seen a surge in global activities and local destructions. During the first half of the 21st century, men live mostly in huge metropolises – taking more and more ground space and sky space. They stack up in already overcrowded spaces, densely populated areas. They can't wait to walk on Mars... and they collide with Nature.
For too many decades, men have acted as if the environment was stable and immutable.
Our fairly recent awareness of a rapid and man induced climate change has forced us to face reality: our environment is ever changing – permanently unstable. Be the changes sudden or slow, loud or silent, natural or man induced, we can't help but dread the next catastrophe.
Altnacht's CityFictions Series stands at the crossroads of global catastrophes and urban expansion. Landscapes explode, monumental structures are transformed and softened.
Combining the tools of digital composition, architectural projection, and photography, the CityFictions Series is a collection of surreal, supernatural, and unreal landscapes which, through the artist's interpretation, have become the dramatization of a fantasized and amplified urban landscape.
The CityFictions Series challenge both our perception of a place and of its memory, making us aware of our inability to identify one without the other.
Altnacht’s art is a process of deconstruction/reconstruction. Deconstructing photographs of the real world to create a new photograph of his own world.