‘From my studio, I travel through the mountains in my mind, longing for untouched nature and the distant unknown. I see snow-covered high alpine landscapes as symbolic of that longing. I love to go to the Alps. At the same time, I can enjoy the landscape in my studio just the same. I like to look at maps, or I fold a piece of paper so that it becomes a mountain itself.’
A new aspect has become more relevant to Ulrike Heydenreich in recent years. The snow is melting, the glaciers are receding, and the time of the old photographs she uses in her work seems to be gone forever.
‘The mountain peaks are no longer covered in a thick layer of magical, eternal snow.’ ‘I’m very aware of the issue of climate change and the rapidly changing mountain landscape. Not only is the paper of my materials a century old, but the views captured are also historic.
‘What most interested me at first was the inherent beauty of the maps, the panoramas. I wondered how I could use them to make a perfect circle, and how to fix the shape in such a way as to make it permanent.’
Her attitude gradually became more inquisitive. ‘I think it’s important to name places. Where is this? What am I looking at?’ Knowing this exactly is important. ‘My interest is directed more and more towards the real, geographical mountains that I want to protect and preserve.’