photography, Falk Lehmann aka Akut - profile

Akut /   Falk Lehmann

Germany 1977

Street Art, Graffiti, Photography, Murals

Falk Lehmann
July 5, 2015

Falk Lehmann aka Akut is a German street artist and photographer, a member of the Herakut artistic duo.

Herakut Duo: Falk Lehmann as a Graffiti Artist

Falk Lehmann, better known under a moniker Akut, was born in 1977 in the town of Schmalkalden, Germany. Akut got his education in Visual Communication and Graphic Design from the Bauhaus University in Weimar. His graffiti career started in the early 1990s, while he was a teenager.

Detached from the real graffiti scene in other larger cities, street art in the town of Schmalkalden developed in its own, unique path. The art of graffiti came into Falk Lehmann’s town in an unusual way – a local kid saw a street art piece while on a vacation in Spain. That kid copied a Spanish piece on a wall and started a neighborhood’s graffiti fever. Soon enough, every kid in Schmalkalden wanted to paint and leave a mark on walls of their native town. Among this children was Falk Lehmann, who was not interested in common graffiti tagging and letter-painting. His street art was different from the others – he focused on painting photorealistic wall pieces. His unique style led to a collaboration with Hera the painter in a duo called Herakut, a prolific partnership that started in 2004.

photography, Falk Lehmann aka Akut - Takeover - Jordan, 2014
Falk Lehmann aka Akut – Takeover – Jordan, 2014

Akut’s Take on a Photography

Besides his notable collaboration with the painter Jasmin Siddiqui – a real name behind her better-known moniker Hera, in now famous and previously mentioned duo Herakut, Falk Lehmann aka Akut also makes a strong statement as a photographer. His versatile photo series depict different social problems people are faced with, from many homeless people in Hawaii that lost their homes due to one of the highest housing prices in America, to child workers in Nepal.
In addition, the fact that Akut is a graffiti artist himself allows him to capture true essence of street art scene. He captures painted murals in a context with people looking at and living beside the wall pieces, giving us a different perspective on how graffiti affects its surroundings. Akut also made a series of close up photographs named Thumbnail Pollocks, capturing the side effect of his regular occupation.

photography, Falk Lehmann aka Akut - Thumbnail Pollocks - a close-up series
Falk Lehmann aka Akut – Thumbnail Pollocks – a close-up series

Upside Down Project: Portraying Refugee Children

As a photographer, Akut creates photo series that investigate and explore different social and political themes. His photography has a humanitarian and socially conscious touch to it. One of the important problems Akut tried to bring closer to the Western world is a civil war that rages in Syria, a war that makes many Syrian kids to grow up as refugees.

One of Falk Lehmann’s photo series, entitled Children of Zaatari, depicts a situation in Zaatari, one of the refugee camps in Jordan. The camp shelters many Syrians fleeing the violence in their native country. The most terrifying fact is that half of the refugees are children.

photography, Falk Lehmann aka Akut - UPSIDEDOWN portrait series - Palestinian orphans, 2015
Falk Lehmann aka Akut – UPSIDEDOWN portrait series – Palestinian orphans, 2015

Along Children of Zaatari, Falk Lehmann created another important photo series, Upside Down. The Upside Down project portrays Syrian children inside the refugee camp, photographed hanging upside down. The artist makes a clever symbolical resemblance of the psychological state these children of war are in – with their life turned upside down, he captures their now warped existence. Due to the terrible war, their normal routines with family, school and play are destroyed. As an ongoing project, Akut continued Upside Down with the recent second part of the photo series, portraying Palestinian orphans in the city of Bethlehem.

Falk Lehmann aka Akut lives and works in Schmalkalden, Germany.

YearName of the exhibitionMuseum/GallerySolo/Group
2015Sans titreGallery Mathgoth, Paris Francegroup
2015Dreamlands CoreyHelford Gallery – CHG Circa, Culver City California USAgroup
20152 for 2Vertical Gallery, Chicago Illinois USAgroup
2015SANTA MISERIAVarsi Gallery, Rome Italysolo
2015LAX/LHRStolenspace Gallery, London United Kingdomgroup
2015Made in BerlinGalerie Mathgoth, Paris Francegroup
2015Outsiders InReed Projects, Stavanger Norwaygroup
2015Art without bordersTollwood Festival, Munich Germanygroup
2014Flaw CircusRuttowski;68 Gallery, Cologne GermanySolo
2014Language of the Wall – Graffiti / Street ArtPera Museum, Istanbul TurkeyGroup
2014Colours Of ResilienceFrankfurt GermanyGroup
2014Herakut @ Scope Art FairWitzenhausen Gallery, Basel SwitzerlandGroup
2014Herakut @ ARTMUCMUCA, Munich Germanylife performance
2014Colours Of ResilienceAmman JordanGroup
2013Too high to heal Metro Gallery, Melbourne, AustraliaSolo
2013Kolor Kathmandu Kathmandu, NepalGroup
2013City of GoldJohannesburg, South AfricaGroup
2013Coachella Palm Springs, USAGroup
2013You Have Diamonds In Your MindJOYCE, Shanghai,ChinaSolo
2013You Have Diamonds In Your MindJOYCE, Manila, PhilippinesSolo
2013Anti-Defamation League Charity Auction Los Angeles ,USAGroup
2013Cons Space Berlin 2013 Berlin ,GermanyGroup
2013Don't look at me Shooting Gallery, San Francisco ,USASolo
2013Brainy days MUCA, Munich ,GermanySolo
2012Hybrid ThinkingNYC ,USAGroup
2012After The LaughterLeBasse Project, Los Angeles, USASolo
2012When Lucent found Herakut The Palace Theatre, Los Angeles, USAGroup
2012Loving the Exiled941Geary Gallery, San Francisco ,USASolo
2012Wall City Canvas Mexico City,MexicoGroup
2012After The Laughter Mayfair, London, UKSolo
2012Upfest Bristol ,UKGroup
2012Jukebox KontroversHaus am Lützowplatz, Berlin ,GermanySolo
2012Heaven meets Earth Monastery Sankt Otilien, GermanyGroup
2012Scope Miami ,USAGroup
2012Pulse Miami, USAGroup
2012Herakut meets - The Real Art – SuperheroesFreiburg, GermanyGroup
2011Street aka MuseumMuseum of Art, Portsmouth ,USAGroup
2011Outside/In LeBasse Projects, USAGroup
2011ARTMOSH Munich ,GermanyGroup
2011The Heras and AkutVolksstudio Heidelberg ,GermanyGroup
2011Coachella Palm Springs,USAGroup
2011Brightest SunKunsthalle Mannheim, GermanyGroup
2011Upfest Bristol, UKGroup
2011Masters of Amateurism Amsterdam, NederlandsGroup
2011Herakut oneThirty3, New Castle, UKGroup
2011City Leaks Cologne,GermanyGroup
2011NuArt Stavanger ,NorwayGroup
2011Behind the Berlin WallWende Museum, Los Angeles ,USAGroup
2011HallenkunstChemnitz ,GermanyGroup
2010Urban ArtADDICT Gallery, Paris, FranceGroup
2010Moniker ArtfairLondon ,UKGroup
2010Hopes ReplyLeBasse Projects, Los Angeles ,USASolo
2010Urban CultureStaatsgallerie, Stuttgart ,GermanyGroup
2010Letzte ZweifelGallerie Springmann, Freiburg ,GermanySolo
2010Happy Doubt DayGallerie Springmann-Varol, Düsseldorf, GermanySolo
2009No PlacebosRed Flagg Gallery, New York, USASolo
2009You Sure? Philipps de Pury, London, UKGroup
2009ZeeZ-Bau, Nuernberg, GermanyGroup
2009Berliner Liste Berlin ,GermanyGroup
2008Dirty LaundryCovent Garden, London ,UKSolo
2008ConcretoCasa de Lago, Mexico City ,MexicoGroup
2008Nuart08Tou Scene, Stavanger ,NorwayGroup
2008CorkedUrban Angle, London, UKGroup
2008Burning BridgesBrick Lane Gallery, London, UKGroup
2008Natural Street FreaksCarhartt Gallery, Weil am Rhein ,GermanyGroup
2008Meeting of StylesCarevo ,BulgariaGroup
2008Streichelzoo Carmichael Gallery, Los Angeles ,USASolo
2008Fresh Air Smells FunnyKunsthalle Dominikanerkirche, Osnabrueck ,GermanyGroup
2007Permission To PaintLeonard Street Gallery, London, UKSolo
2007Nuart07 Rogalant Art Museum, Stavanger, NorwayGroup
2007Evolving Styles Cargo, London, UKGroup
2007Balcan ExpressSarajevo, Bosnia & HerzegovinaGroup
2007Peepshow Reithalle, Ingolstadt, GermanyGroup
2007Pink PawsBauhaus University, Weimar,GermanyGroup
2007Graffiti Filles ExhibitionParis ,FranceGroup
2006Urban Art Festival El Burro, Gran Canaria, SpainGroup
2006Cultura Urbana Festival Madrid, SpainGroup
2006Odd Stories Carhartt Stores, Köln & Düsseldorf, GermanySolo
2005Never Ending Story2Goethe-Institut, Athens ,Greece Group