FOCSA121 I Louis Schreyer
School of Communication, Information Experience Design
Louis Schreyer is a German-born artist and designer based in London. A graduate of both Central St Martins and the London College of Communication, he is currently studying Information Experience Design at the RCA. His practice explores a range of media, including the classic - analog photography and videography - and the new, with interactive sculptures and digital realities.
His work is socially critical and often political. He examines social behaviour, and the interactions of humans and machines: with a particular focus on surveillance, and different means of control. He places this investigative practice in the context of post-truth politics and the modern city, as well as the impact on the human mind.
He is one of the creative directors and represented artists of Noble People London, a creative platform for emerging talents in the fields of music, fashion and art. He has exhibited with Noble People at the Soho Revue and also Noble Studios in Clerkenwell. His design work has been commissioned by the Science Museum as part of astronaut Tim Peake’s Principia Launch Event in 2015.
“As an artist I assume an outsider’s position in recording and abstracting aspects about human behaviour, and urban, natural and psychological environments.
This image is from my series Sin Pena, taken in Cuba in 2016. It was taken from the famous Hotel Nacional - which dates from 1930 - and depicts the FOCSA building, Cuba’s tallest tower and an engineering sensation when it was completed in 1956.
Sin Pena is an exploration of socialism, Cuban history and the current political and social situation. It questions whether socialism or capitalism can be seen as a path to happiness; particularly the breed of socialism to which Fidel Castro’s ideals belonged, which is rapidly becoming extinct.
Cuba is changing fast and the acceleration of “Americanisation” is keenly felt. This change brings positives and negatives to an island where you can make more money in the tourist industry than you can as a highly-trained doctor. In that sense their choice of study and “career” differs to our choice in the western world. Becoming educated in a subject you love, a luxury like being able to study art and furthermore, to earn a living making art, is a dream unimaginable to most Cubans.
I was fortunate enough to make a good friend, Abelito, in the bar of the Hotel Nacional, and he took me around the outskirts of Havana and showed me what Cubans really think about the political changes. We spoke about their hopes, dreams, aspirations and fears. It was here in the Hotel Nacional, that my immersion into a society on the cusp of a dramatic change really began - and it was in the FOCSA building that my journey ended.”
Image Size: 65cm x 52cm (With frame: 79cm x 66 cm)
Paper: Hahnemühle Photo Rag
Frame: Solid white maple frame with white passe-partout