Mount Ararat Landscapes

Mount Ararat Landscapes

Ursula schulz-dornburg

In 2006 Ursula Schulz-Dornburg first traveled to Armenia to photograph Mount Ararat. During this journey she was struck by the sculptural quality of the mountain. The resulting photographs stand alone as unique objects, highlighting the mountains expansive form.

In 2010 Ursula revisited Mount Ararat and something unexpected happened: the mirror in her Hasselbald camera stuck, cutting off the bottom third of the negatives. At first Ursula was so dismayed by this that she did not continue to work on the images. However, after recently enlarging this work, she found that these photographs have taken on a new form: they have become landscapes rather than sculptures, opening up new possibilities of presentation and relation to the area surrounding the mountain.

We are pleased to present two new landscape groupings of Mount Ararat by Ursula Schulz-Dornburg. In addition, we are featuring a brand new video conversation between Ursula and Stephan Schneider, in which they discuss Ursula’s photographic journey with Mount Ararat, as well as the ancient names of winds.


Wind that destroys


Wind from the south


Hot Wind





Ursula Schulz-Dornburg discusses her new Mount Ararat photographs with Stefan Schneider.

“After revisiting and enlarging these photographs, I see that they have taken on a new form: they have become landscapes. And through becoming landscapes, they have opened up whole new possibilities – new relationships to the surrounding area… I paid more attention to the weather, how the weather affected the landscape, how it affected the mountain.


Dark Sequence 1, Mount Ararat Landscapes, 2010/2021
Four Gelatin Silver Prints
Each print 16 x 13 inches

“Throughout history Mount Ararat has been a place of mythological imagination and political struggles, of strife and conquest, loss and longing. With nations and empires coming and going over the millennia, it has been part of different countries and has been given different names. It was the geographical centre of the ancient Armenian kingdoms and lying in Eastern Turkey today, it has remained the national symbol of Armenia, visible from its capital Yerevan across the border. 

In pre-Christian mythology, it was the home of the gods. In the Bible it is the landing place of Noah’s Ark, the only tale that, crossing boundaries in time and space, links the Book of Genesis, the New Testament, the Apocrypha, the Sumerian Atrahasis Epic, the Assyrian Gilgamesh Saga, the Koran, and the Jewish Talmud through one shared motif.”




Dark Sequence 2, Mount Ararat Landscapes, 2010/2021
Three Gelatin Silver Prints
Each print 16 x 13 inches

Mount Ararat is a major water source to the Tigris-Euphrates tributaries that run through Mesopotamia and the Fertile Crescent. This area played a central role in the birth of early agriculture and is considered the “Cradle of Civilization”.

In 1980 Ursula had the idea to follow the these tributaries down from their source, and created her series Mesopatamia, Iraq, 1980 . “I became increasingly interested in the birth place of human culture…these landscapes belong together”. Ursula Schulz-Dornburg says, while comparing her new Mount Ararat landscapes to her early Mesoptamia images.


“The clouds are closely related to the ancient names of the wind –and thus to the condition of man to the world. This opens up the work, allowing it to expand beyond the heavens.”





Wind that comes entirely from the
depths (like from a deep cave)


Kite Wind


Fish Cloud


Cold Wind

1. Video header from Ursula Schulz-Dornburg Drawing the Line, 2006