Stefanie Schneider (born 1968 in Cuxhaven) is a German photographer living in Berlin and Los Angeles. Schneider's photographic work exploits the distinctive appearance of expired Polaroid instant film. Her photographs are enlarged by hand in her Berlin "Labudio" laboratory. Random visual artifacts can be found in the resulting imagery, a consequence of deterioration of the chemicals and film involved.
Schneider's preferred choice of location is the American West (especially Twentynine Palms, California, which served as location and title to one of her books), and the mounting of sequential images in a panel, the photographs evoke the impression of faded dreamy film stills. Schneider's work is released in books and exhibition catalogs. She holds a MFA in photography from the Folkwang Hochschule in Essen, Germany.
Schneider completed "29 Palms, CA" in 2014. A feature film, art piece that explores the dreams and fantasies of a group of people who live in a trailer community in the Californian desert. The project includes six films: "Hitchhiker", "Rene's dream", "Sidewinder", "Till death do us part", "Heather's dream" and "The girl behind the white picket fence". A defining feature is the use of still Polaroid images in succession and voice over. Characters talk to themselves about their ambitions, memories, hopes and dreams. The latest of these short film is "Heather's dream", starring Heather Megan Christie and Udo Kier, and was selected in May 2013 by the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen and is also nominated for the 2013 German short film award.
In a review of her book Stranger Than Paradise, Daniel Kothenschulte writes in the German magazine Literaturen that:
Stefanie Schneider is an internationally known artist that takes analog photographs and makes experimental movies with them. Schneider has cribed some of the titles of the series of her enlarged Polaroids from her favorite movies: Red Desert, Zabriskie Point or The Last Picture Show. Even if most images remain connected to the genre of road movies—in one case one seems to get a glimpse of Ridley Scott's tragic runaways Thelma and Louise.
Schneider has done album covers for the Red Hot Chili Peppers 2006 "Desecration Smile" single and Cyndi Lauper's 2008 "Bring Ya to the Brink" album. Schneider produced all the artwork in the 2005 film Stay directed by Marc Forster for the character played by Ryan Gosling The end credits were also done with expired Polaroid film. Schneider's new Berlin analog "Labudio" was completed in 2015.
- Daniel Kothenschulte: "Fehlfarbige Filmhelden regieren diese Welt: Stefanie Schneiders Foto-Band "Stranger than Paradise'", Literaturen, April 2006, p. 4. Online version retrieved 14 January 2010.
- Stefanie Schneider's website
- 29 Palms,Ca Project
- Different Girl
- Schneider shoots Cyndi Lauper
- Till death do us part1
- Till death do us part2
- Rene's dream
- The girl behind the white picket fence