Taken with instagram
Taken with instagram
Müller is best known for his Vandals series, which documents the world-wide graffiti movement of writers who leave their name on public transport. After several years of working under harsh conditions on four different continents, Müller has taken this series to unexpected dimensions and is now one of the most famous photographers to document graffiti.
Müller has specialized in documenting the process of painting subways, which is considered the top prize within the international graffiti world. Subways hold such a high value because of the difficulty, the danger and risk involved. Subway painting has separated itself from the common graffiti community as it is a more secretive sect of the elite who push the bar and have created something which can be likened to an extreme graffiti sport. Regardless of the subway system or the country, razor wired fences have to be cut or climbed, motion sensors, cameras, and alarm systems have to be overcome and if something goes wrong, be ready to run.
A notable aspect to Müller’s work is his ability to keep create an environment which is neutral, he neither commends nor condemns his subjects, allowing the viewer to form their own conclusion. He shows a view into a split second of his reality from his perspective, often when things are happening so fast that there isn’t a second to stop. There is a story that is told, the skillful entering through secured emergency exits, the swift dash on subway tracks while the subway system is in service. The emotions that are captured are stem from successes to failures; the tension and fear, the sense of focus and determination are clearly felt throughout his work.
Müller is also able to capture the intensity of a moment, which can be seen throughout his Vandals series. This ongoing long-term project has allowed him to travel to many European metropolises such as Paris and London, visiting Berlin, Bucharest, Oslo and Milano but also documenting international destinations like Bangkok, Shanghai, Caracas and New York City. Müller’s takes a variety of risks in to document these actions and this movement. The threat of arrest, imprisonment and heavy monetary penalties in his native Europe, while his work in other countries carries a far higher risk, where security forces are equipped with machine guns.
Müller is continuing his documentation on the forefront of the international train painting movement and has already released one book, “Blütezeit” (Gingko Press, 2009) documenting the international train painting culture. He is currently working on a follow up title set to be released in early 2012. As the movement is still alive, the documentation is taking place but with technological advances, the increasing difficulty will one day put an end to this subculture. These photographs will be used to look back at something in its purest from. Thirty years from now, when graffiti will be grouped into a part of pop culture and removed of its stigmas, this contemporary documentation, free of any mass medial distortion will be used to understand the true past. People will be able to collectively admire a true and exact depiction of the, was has been condemned for such a long time.