Elisabeth Ajtay

New York / Cologne


Born and raised behind the iron curtain and growing up in Western Germany, Elisabeth Ajtay is a conceptual artist using photography as her primary tool of expression. Her works reflect and question western culture with themes related to communication, advertising, and the psychological impacts of technological changes. Her multi-facetted practice is a reflection on her translation from growing up in, and, constantly moving between two different systems.

She received a diploma in communications design from the University of Applied Sciences and Art (FH Dortmund) in Dortmund and an MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. Her formal education was preceded by studies in dance, baiting, drawing and photography in Budapest, Hungary, with Tamás Kopasz and other artists.

Her work can be found in numerous private collections. She has exhibited throughout Europe and in the US, including inSPIRACJE and Art Moves Festival in Poland, Goethe Institutes in Morocco, Prague, New York and France. Museum shows include the MKK -Museum for Art and Cultural History Dortmund, Germany and Blue Star Contemporary in San Antonio, Texas. She has exhibited with Alter Space and Savernack Street in San Francisco, CA. The Ministry of Education and Training of Northrhine-Westphalia is working with her series “Zuhause/At Home” for educational purposes, encouraging discussions about the notion of belonging and nationality. Most recently she was awarded an artist in residence at BANFF Center for Arts and Culture in Canada and the Vermont Studio Center. She lives and works in New York City and Cologne.

Untitled (Imagined Topographies), 2020

Created with the moon alphabet, that I drew from 2013 to 2014, these photograms, use negative and positive imagery of the moon alphabet. The hard edge of each negative contrasts the movement of the letters on the photographic surface.

metamorphosen (metamorphosis), 2013 / 2017 umbrella, wire

metamorphosen (metamorphosis) is a series of sculptures using umbrellas and wires as source material. Both material are found. The umbrellas were picked up in the urban landscape; Damaged by weather conditions against which they were promised to offer shelter.