Uta Barth is a photographer whose reductive and quiet images capture moments of observation of ordinary scenes. Like a glance frozen in time, Barth’s photographs hold the viewer’s gaze on what would otherwise be fleeting. Blank walls, windowpanes, curtains, and blurred street scenes are some of the mundane subjects that become elevated under Barth’s focus. Her interior and landscape images have a cinematic quality, conveying a very purposeful act of looking at something through the lens of a camera. The familiarity of subjects and lack of descriptive details can evoke a sense of déjà vu in the viewer, their lack of specificity bringing them into the realm of a shared consciousness.
Uta Barth was born in 1958 in Berlin, Germany. In the mid-1990s her series Field and Ground brought her international acclaim. Thereafter Barth presented her nowhere near series featuring views looking out windows of her home onto a generic Los Angeles street at different times of day and in different weather conditions, while her …end of time series turned the lens toward the interior of the same home. She has produced several subsequent series including ... and to draw a bright white line with light which debuted at the Art Institute of Chicago in 2011.
Her work is represented in numerous public collections including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Tate Gallery, London; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; and Lannan Foundation, Santa Fe. Barth lives and works in Los Angeles.