Stefan Saffer's gold edge

Stefan Saffer Goldkante [Gold Edge - ed.] 2004 marker, golden foil, cardboard, cut-out, shadow on the wall 81" x 120" (8 panels)

Saffergoldkante detail.jpg
Goldkante detail

installation view with Goldkante on the left, Bohemia on the right, center piece not identified

We first saw the German artist Stefan Saffer's work last year at a studio show of the Whitney Independent Study Program (ISP). We really liked it at first sight, and our enthusiasm has built with every exposure since. We almost missed meeting the artist that first afternoon, but someone pointed him out to us as we were leaving and he became instantly unforgettable. Saffer is an articulate, and charming, intelligent and well-educated artist with an extraordinary familiarity with and curiosity about his world. His honest and open face is wonderfully distinctive, but perhaps the more remarkable considering the usual fine scale of his adopted medium he is also impressive for his heroic size (I checked, his hands alone seem to be larger than mine, and I have a span of nearly ten inches).

Saffer creates gorgeous, delicate-appearing paper (usually) cutouts which evoke entire literary (usually) worlds in wonderful graphic almost-narratives which will reveal their secrets to the patient viewer, but only reluctantly. Each of these truly sculptural pieces, whether worked from a sheet of thin cardboard only a few inches in length and resting on pins projecting from a wall or cut from heavy sheet metal and installed in a public square, boldly resists confinement to the two dimensions normally expected of its form. Because of its relationship to the wall or physical space outdoors, Saffer's work is always three-dimensional - at the very least.

The shadow which gives the paper works such dimension is probably seen to the best advantage in the image of the artist's Forest below.

Because of the richness of their sources and their materials, and the artist's creative imagination, these pieces never come close to repeating themselves. Lately Saffer has begun to experiment with using more than one layer of cut material, so it's clear we've only begun to see what he can do. Although his curriculum vitae is very impressive, he looks like he may still be in his twenties.

Saffer's galleries are m├╝llerdechiara in Berlin and Kate MacGarry in London.

Additional works appear below as thumbnails which can be enlarged by clicking onto the images.

Stefan Saffer Forest 2005 gouache, lead pencil, cardboard, drawing cut-out, shadow on the wall 16" x 23"

Stefan Saffer Rainer Maria 2004 the poem "the Panther" informs a small cut-out paper cage 10" x 2" x 6.25"

Stefan Saffer StagNation 2004 gouache, cardboard, drawing cut-out, shadow on the wall 81" x 94.5"

Stefan Saffer The Meeting 2004 gouache, color pencil, cloth tape on cardboard, cut-out, shadow on the wall 67" x 78.75" (4 panels)

Stefan Saffer Bohemia 2004 color pencil, marker on colored cardboard, cut-out, shadow on the wall 45.25" x 25.5"

[images from Stefan Saffer]

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We went to the DiVA Art Fair today, and it was definetly the most pleasant experience of all of my... Read More

Last 3 post were great! All new to me, nice imagery. Thanks.