When the Fine Arts School of Leipzig, Germany, announced a student exchange programme with the Athens School of Fine Arts last year, Julius-Christian Schreiner jumped right at the opportunity to spend a few months in the city. Originally from Hamburg, Julius studied photography in Berlin, and is currently a postgraduate student in Leipzig, which he doesn't really like as he admits because he's enamoured with large cities. Athens is right down his alley it seems: since he first arrived here last February, Julius has been constantly exploring the city, wandering around the streets and photographing anything he might find interesting, without a particular concept in mind. He has produced quite a few images so far, most of them focusing on Athenian architecture and the city's unique layering.
My photography is more about the object itself rather than the fact that these buildings are abandoned.
Julius explains in an interview with UND Athens . "I try to focus on the decorations or details of each place, the accumulated details and material improvisation that I come across." Indeed, Athens is the perfect place to discover accumulated materials and details: the city itself is 5000 years old, combining countless layers of history from Ancient Greece to Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman and modern times. Then there's the unique architectural pastiche that is Athens, with its mid-century modernist office buildings standing next to neoclassical mansions and 1970's apartment blocks. What is interesting in the way Julius captures the city is his fresh look, and his sharp eye for discovering sculptural formations and compositions in the everyday fabric of the Athenian grid.
Julius-Christian Schreiner – Courtesy of UND Athens