Josef Hoflehner was born in 1955 in Wels, Austria, when the country was still under allied occupation. He grew up in a family where the camera was used so rarely that as many as three Christmas holidays would be captured on one roll of film. Although Austria could boast awesome mountains and a great natural landscape, it had no coastlines, deserts or empty spaces where one could see the horizon unimpaired. At the age of 20, Hoflehner purchased a camera and began to travel. An early award for photography began to open doors professionally and his career has continued to develop with amazing success.
Each of Hoflehner’s photographs achieves a perfection of composition that seems to defy the possibility that it could ever be seen any other way. Gripping in their ultimate solitude and the unexpected natural beauty they capture, Hoflehner's photographs take his earthly subject matter to raise it to an almost mythical level, defining the essence of the place. In these rare and elusive moments, the natural and the man made are brought together in a poetic interplay of light and shadow, emptiness and structure. Through his images, we are moved to a new level of observation and exposed to a world where the chance and an underlying natural order coexist with our own built environment.
Hoflehner’s exquisite silver gelatin prints are found in a constantly growing number of public, private and corporate collections around the globe; notable collections include Polo Ralph Lauren, AT&T, Fidelity Investments, French banking giant Societe Generale and GAP/Banana Republic. Josef has exhibited worldwide, he was voted Nature Photographer of the Year 2007 and is set to release the fourteenth monograph of his work in Fall 2012.