Aerial photographs by Klaus Leidorf
Photographs for the preservation of historical monuments
Landscape archaeologist Klaus Leidorf has been taking photographs from the air for over 30 years. When he flies over the country in his small plane, he searches with a practiced eye for historical traces in the ground. In this way, he has already documented many thousands of archaeological sites or discovered them in the first place. From the perspective of a walker, the vegetation features that identify the remains of historical settlements or buildings would not be visible. However, foundations, ditches, old watercourses, old roads, and ramparts are visible from the air.
Since the 1980s, these aerial photographs have been professionally analyzed. Increasing land consumption has made it necessary to take a closer look at the landscape - meadows and fields cannot be multiplied at will.
Discoveries from the bird's eye view
A by-product of aerial photography for archaeology are countless landscape images from a bird's eye view. With every flight, Klaus Leidorf observes nature and cultural landscapes, roofscapes, traffic routes, populated squares and delivers fascinating artistic photographs. Light and shadow create atmospheric motifs. Abstract structures and daring cut-outs puzzle the viewer.
These landscapes are often created by the work of farmers. They seem to be painted from a height. However, they are created by hand labor or machine use. In fact, they are fertilized, harrowed, tilled, seeded, rolled, mowed, cut, sprayed and driven.
Photographer – pilot – aerial archaeologist
Klaus Leidorf, born in Bonn on June 5, 1956, studied, among other things, prehistory and early history in Bonn and Marburg before working for several years as a research assistant at the University of Marburg and as an employee of the Bavarian State Office for the Preservation of Monuments. In 1988, he gave in to his early fascination for flying and photography and acquired a pilot's license. Various other courses at German universities and aerial archaeological activities for the Archaeological Monument Preservation of several German states followed.
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