Dried and pressed sycamore leaves serve as the material for Michael Schuster’s artistic work. Using a scalpel, he carefully and expertly cuts out figurative silhouettes from single leaves, which are then applied to paper or assembled in the form of wall installations. The leaf veins – which the artist understands to be lifelines – are always visible, giving his cut-out figures a certain liveliness.

Thematically, Schuster deals with the preservation and retention of memories. His cut-outs are based on photographs, including snapshots from his family album, which he transforms from the personal into the universal, bringing them to life in another medium, shifted in time and space. Although the photographic originals capture very personal moments in life, the displays lose subjectivity and intimacy due to the pictorial reduction process. New images with universal character emerge from past moments. 

Michael Schuster was born in Mannheim in 1963 and studied free art at the Freie Kunstakademie and visual communication at the Fachhochschule für Gestaltung. After completing his studies, he had numerous solo and group exhibitions in Germany and abroad, for example at the Zaha Museum in Seoul (2012). His works can be seen regularly at art fairs such as art KARLSRUHE. Schuster lives and works in Berlin.

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