Torsten Pauer »Going Down« Glances often deceive us. The photo series »Going Down« by the Vienna photo artist Torsten Pauer forces the viewer to take a closer look – again and again. The stories in those pictures reflect everyday situations – still they are precisely arranged. »Going Down« brings the tension between a concrete message and the imagination of the viewer to life.
The project »Going Down«, pursued by Torsten for more than a year, consists meanwhile of 40 photos, all taken at a subway station in Vienna. At the subway station „Volkstheater“ one finds a small stairway down to the subway. In good weather this subway entrance radiates in the sun. And Torsten is interested in capturing exactly the moment of passengers trespassing from the sun into the dark. Torsten Pauer has a remarkable intuition how to transfer threedimensional reality into the twodimensional space of a photo. No detail distracts the observer: the person is in the centre of the picture. Given the sharp contrast between dark and light, the photos in »Going Down« have the effect of paper cuts.
»Going Down« in a way carries to extremes a picture series such as »i« by Eamonn Doyle by reducing the image of the person to head and torso – seen seen only from behind. Sometimes women grab their hair to avoid its being tousled by the wind. Sometimes the straps of backpacks and bags turn into graphic elements structuring the picture. Apart from the anonymity of the scene, a concrete individual person comes into view.
Torsten Pauer’s approach to Street Photography draws on the perspective of an empathethic observer. From the sequences of daily life moments are filtered that suddenly seem abstracted from daily routine. Photography creates moments of pause. »Going Down« only uses sunlight. Backgrounds are minimally darkened.. The photos focus on details – always maintaining the distance of respect. The frgamentation of bodies turn into a poetic gesture.
With the preciseness of a documentary this series of photos illustrates a rite de passage: a transition between light and dark, Übergangsstadium zwischen Hell und Dunkel, upstairs and downstairs, life and fugacity. »Going Down« turns those transient moments into lively impressions.