Albrecht Schäfer, Chandelier, 2009
A key aspect of Albrecht Schäfer’s work is his exploration and use of space. His installations are not just stand-alone artworks; they also draw in and on the surrounding area. His “Kronleuchter” [Chandelier], on display in the foyer of the Bundesbank’s branch in Berlin, stretches the length and breadth of two floors. Seen from below, a cloud of multiform glass crystals hovers overhead. During the daytime they refract the sun’s rays in a thousand hues, while after dark the crystals twinkle in the glow of the light bulbs and lamps. In the middle we see the metal frame of a chandelier. Yet this familiar object appears strange and bare, as if its glass ornaments have flown into orbit around it. This fragmentation gives rise to an entirely new situation. The traditional image of the chandelier as a rich, old-fashioned decorative element disappears. Instead, we focus on its individual components, their particular physical properties and the alternating mood as day slowly changes into night. Albrecht Schäfer’s carefully deconstructed chandelier challenges the onlooker to revisit the familiar and everyday from different aspects and angles.