Birgit Jürgenssen

Cyanotypes from the years 1988/89
Galerie Hubert Winter, Vienna
13/01/12 till 04/02/12

Birgit Jürgenssen: Cyanotypien von 1988/89, in:, 19.1.2012.

Capturing the Sunlight.

In her Cyanotypes, Birgit Jürgenssen draws on a procedure that had been applied to photography as early as 1842 by Anna Atkins, an English botanist. Cyanotype is a classic photographic print procedure, also known as blue print, or iron blue print, with its typical shades of cyan blue. The word 'cyan' is derived from the Greek 'kyanos', and specifies the deep dark 'steel blue', or 'black blue'.

In Cyanotype, photographic paper is fixed on to the back of a negative and exposed to sunlight for a set span of time, usually by taping the paper and negative on to a window pane. Cyanotype takes advantage of the sensitivity of iron salts applied to paper that produce permanent, water-insoluble crystals under UV exposure. mehr

From darkness to light.

In Cyanotypes the motif is not sharply contoured, yet a bright stroke contrasts distinctly with the dark blue background - in exquisite lightness. The world no longer appears to us in its familiar light, it rather seems to be transfigured into a dreamlike beauty. An inkling of something distant and boundless is confusing our simple contentment. But of course, this story, abounding in dreamlike and even vertiginous ideas and associations, through all these clips of memories, fosters our sense of wonder: marveling at the technique, the duration of the protracted photographic procedure.

In using this technique, Birgit Jürgenssen has created wonderful works, shimmering pearls radiating with a tender glow that even people who are not yet even born will still behold with gentle affection and amazement.


What significance has the colour blue for you?
Which artistic work or which artist comes to mind, when the term blue is used?
The most 'blue' blue in your opinion?
The most important work related to the topic blue?

- Infinity..
   Mood of the soul.

- Yves Klein. Georg Trakl.

- That of the eyes I love.
   Blue Velvet.
   A blue mark.

- Skipping work, weekdays.

Birgit Jürgenssen, Questionnaire on the "theme blue", in: Andreas Bee, Christmut Praeger (Ed.), Exh. cat. BLAU: Kaleidoskop einer Farbe. Kunstverein. Heidelberg 1990, p.79.


blue blood
blue feel
blue funk
once in a blue moon
blue ribbon
true blue
fire into the blue
Prussian blue
blue velvet
the blues
blue beard
blue bell
blue berry
blue eyed

Birgit Jürgenssen
Exh. cat. Birgit Jürgenssen, Graeme Murray Gallery, Edinburgh 1988, p.20.

Back to top