„Orientation is not a gift, an ability that you either have or don‘t have. It is a prerequisite for being able to exist at all. Addressing any type of environment is part of our existence. Living with the respective localization is the prerequisite for our freedom, our self-confidence. Knowing where I am is a prerequisite for where I have to move, one way or the other.” 

Otl Aicher, one of the most influential German designers and graphic artists of the 20th century.

San Francisco I, June 2022

Köln Mediapark I, November 2022 

Frankfurt Berliner Straße  IV,  September 2022

Hoek van holland S-bahn I, April 2023

Frankfurt Am Dom iv, August 2022

For Otl Aicher, lettering on the bottom is more than just lines and surfaces. They are an existential part of our ability to orientate ourselves and lead a free, self-determined life. Tactile markings let blind people be more confident without help. Escape route markings provide security. Directional arrows provide orientation. However, all too often we don‘t consciously notice them and simply ignore the markings on the ground. 

Norbert Fischbach looked at ground markings in different countries and cities. A series of graphic abstractions emerged from individual photographs and multi-part images. In doing so, the concept of conscious perception was explored with detailed joy in order to make visible what everyone sees but most do not perceive. The precise composition of form, texture, simplicity, detail and color create new compositional elements in the picture, so that the actual objective content recedes to give space for a new, individual interpretation of form and color in an emotional exchange. 

Simple geometric shapes, lines and signal colors, as are common in road traffic, stand for „attention“ and „stop“ and in combination with black,„danger“ is also symbolized.  The degree of abstraction in Norbert‘s photographs increasingly ranges from forms and colors that are still recognizable to abstract expressionism. 

Art is existential, orientation is existential (Otl Aicher). The photo series Abstraction is therefore nothing more than an examination of the existential from an artistic point of view.