Lothar Baumgarten

Rheinsberg Germany 1944, lives/works in New York/Berlin

Junction
1989
painted wall work
128 x 823 cm
2003.LB.13

For many years Lothar Baumgarten has been fascinated with the culture of the native Indian population of the Americas. At the end of the eighties he realized the project Carbon, in which he focused on the history of Indians in the United States by showing the infrastructure of the railroads.

Carbon
consists of roughly one hundred photographs, a number of wall paintings and a book. Many railway lines, viaducts and other railroad locations bear names that are linked with Indian history. While the railroads were once the very life lines for white immigrants, for the native inhabitants they signified the permanent expropriation of their territories. For the Carbon wall paintings, Lothar Baumgarten combines the names of places and railways with a typography derived from the architecture and design of the railroads. These are literally text images that have their own rhythm of sound, form and color.