One of the strongest arguments against photography as an art form is the ability of a viewer to simply and quickly take in all of the aspects of a photo, and move on. No back story.
Nothing left to the imagination, as some would say. I challenge these people to dismiss the works of Thomas H.P. Jerusalem so quickly.
These are images that haunt you by being both familiar, and strange. They raise more questions than answers, and the longer you study them, more mysteries some to light. You wonder what happened to the old dance hall [The old Dance Hall, Model: Natalie Lowden]? You wonder why the woman in white is walking the dog so late at night, and what is holding the dog’s attention [Black Ice, Model: Danielle Bateman, VOGUE Italia]? You wonder why the model’s dress matches the wallpaper [Tapetenwechsel, Model: Alicia Jerusalem, VOGUE Italia]? You wonder why Hallie looks so dismayed [Hallie, Model: Hallie Marie]? They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but Thomas’ photos amplify that, as his silent images send our minds racing. As we search for answers, perhaps the reality is as simple as the quote at the top of his photography page.
“It’s all about the power to freeze a Moment in Time for Eternity,” he explains – and that is exactly what he has done. “It was probably the many hours I spent with my dad, an amateur photographer, in his dark room watching him turning plain white paper into wonderful pictures using a ‘light machine’ and some fluids in colored trays,” he explained. “There was magic in this room behind the always closed door. I remember the dimmed red light, the film rolls, the developed negative films hanging on clothespins and the many wet photos posted on the tile walls until dry.” Thomas said he would hold his breath, and watch as the white paper in the trays transformed into wonderful black and white photos that captured a moment in time, adding that this experience led him to his current passion for photography.
“I can’t recall any specific one, there are too many that were ‘best’ to me,” he said as he tried to decide on a favorite photo experience, adding that all of his shoots have been uniquely memorable. “Maybe the one when I was paparazzi shooting Heath Ledger during the Dark Knight filming.” [Model: Linden Jackson | Hair: Demi Passaris | Photographer: Thomas H P Jerusalem, MUTE Photography] [The Sound of Silence (by Brian Thornton, Modern Model Magazine, June 2015)]
About Thomas H.P. Jerusalem
Thomas H.P. Jerusalem of MUTE Photography is a German photographer living and working in the Western suburbs of Chicago, IL. After living in London, UK for four years, he relocated to Chicago, in 2004. Thomas H.P. Jerusalem is specialized in fashion and conceptual photography with a focus on Magazine, editorial and commercial work. His work has been published in the US and in international magazines including ESTETICA USA, Italian VOGUE/PhotoVogue, Dark Beauty. He is a PhotoVOGUE Gold Artist, and has been listed in the ONE LIFE 2012 Catalog and is represented by the prestigious New York agency Art+Commerce/VOGUE NYC and LemonFRAME, Tel Aviv.
His childhood during the Cold War in West Germany and his father’s over-sized NY Photo Academy books from the sixties influenced his style that emphasizes atmosphere and strong narrative. Thomas H.P. Jerusalem started his career with Street Photography and Photojournalism, both very expressive ways of photography that forged his distinctive sensitive approach.
His work includes dark romantic, high-fashion, avant-garde and vintage space-age fashion photography with an European touch. His models are often placed in surreal environments – devastated, displaced, out of the world. Their appearances eerie and edgy with rebel and punk influences. Often spiced with irony and sarcasm. But always with a strong meaning or statement. His photographs are strong and are telling stories. His portraits are capturing souls – not just faces. [Official Website]