About Bernd Arnold

About The Photographer

As a photographer I work for German and international media as well as on behalf of companies, theatres, actors and musicians. My emphasis here is on portraits and documentaries.

The focus of my photography is the human being. From different directions, I intuitively approach my "surroundings". The result is a contemporary "document" of a world that nourishes me through its social changes and the global turn of time of the last decades.

The central photographs from my work are divided into cycles and evolve over the years from an interplay of independent and commissioned editorial and corporate works, book and exhibition projects.

The cycle Power and Ritual deals with social staging in politics, religion, demimonde, economy and the media.

The scenes in Black East Wild West move at the intersections of the secular and the sacred, on moving masses and moving people and their search for "salvation".

In the series of Unbedeutende Persönlichkeiten, the portraits draw their tension from the interplay of portrayed acquaintances and well-known personalities, the closeness and distance and the transience of the moment.

The atmospheres in Dark Cities Light Places were taken over the years on various journeys within the hometown of Cologne, the course of the nearby Rhine, the distant cities and places. The finding swings between outside and inside, the days and nights and follows the gazes of the people.

In the series Still you will find maybe the deepest possible silence.

In the earliest and at the same time current cycle Digitalis, the transition from the analog to the digital age, with the accompanying dissolution of the authenticity of photography, is documented in various series from different directions.

I was born in Cologne and I studied Photography at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts in Dortmund. Works and lives in Köln (Cologne), Germany.



2022 Die Entdeckung der Stille, St. Peter, Oldenburg, Germany
2021 Reframed, (Rituals of Election Campaigns), Fototage Oldenburg, Germany
2020 Geschenkt, Collection of LVR Landesmuseum Bonn, Germany
2019 100 Jahre DFA - 1000 Wirklichkeiten, Haus der Photographie, Deichtorhallen Hamburg
2019 Lebe Dein Aendern, Galerie Altes Rathaus, Worpswede, Germany
2018 Augen Auf!, Ernst Leitz Museum, Wetzlar, Germany.
2017 I Grande Maestri in Complesso del Vittoriano, Rome, Italy
2017 Eyes Wide Open! in Espacio Fundación Telefónica, Madrid, Spain
2017 Art Karlsruhe 2017, in focus Galerie, Halle 1 Stand U04, (Wahl Kampf Ritual), Germany
2016 Eyes Wide Open! 100 anos de fotografia Leica, Galeria Municipal do Porto, Portugal
2016 Bewegung im Blick, Internationale Photoszene, artrmx, Cologne, Germany
2016 The Flow of Pictures. The Rhine and Photography 2016-1853, LVR Landesmuseum Bonn
2016 Eyes Wide Open! 100 jaar Leica fotografie, Sint-Pietersabdij, Gent, Belgium
2015 Eyes Wide Open! 100 years of Leica photography, OstLicht, Vienna, Austria
2015 Augen Auf! 100 Jahre Leica Fotografie, C|O Berlin, Germany
2014 Projektzeit / new projects, (Black East Wild West), Wissenschaftspark Gelsenkirchen
2014 Augen auf! 100 Jahre Leica Fotografie, Haus der Photographie, Deichtorhallen Hamburg
2013 Power and Ritual, Catholic Academy Schwerte (Solo) 
2013 8. Wiesbadener Fototage - Im Lauf der Zeit (Wahlkampfrituale), Kunsthaus Wiesbaden, Germany
and much more...


Macht und Ritual, Stadtmuseum, Köln 2006

Books and Editions

Raumforderung, Edition artist`s newspaper #4, 2022
So habe ich es gesehen, Edition artist`s newspaper #3, 2021
Die Zeit der großen Stille, Edition artist`s newspaper #2, 2020
Die Entdeckung der Stille, Edition artist`s newspaper #1, 2019
Wahl Kampf Ritual, Monograph, EditionPanorama, Mannheim 2013
Deutschland im Fotobuch (Das Kölner Heil), Steidl-Verlag, 2011
Sakrament und Suende, Edition, Van der Grinten, Cologne 2005
habemus, Edition, Van der Grinten, Cologne 2005
Power And Ritual, Leporello, LGP Gallery Prague, Czech Republic 2004
Theatre Yearbook Cologne, SK-Stiftung, M7-Verlag, Cologne 47 plates, 1999
Das Kölner Heil, Monograph, Schaden Verlag, Cologne 1997
and more...

Editorial Work

Annabelle (CH), Bloomberg Magazine (USA), Bunte, Capital, Dagens Nyheter (S), Das Magazin (CH), Die Woche, DIE ZEIT, Facts (CH), Financial Times Deutschland, Focus, GEO, GEO special, GEO Histoire (F), Greenpeace, NRC Handelsblad (NL), Impulse, Journalist, Kölner Stadtanzeiger, Kölner Illustrierte, L'Express (F), Merian, Neue Züricher Zeitung (CH), NZZ am Sonntag, Playboy, Spiegel, Stadtrevue, Stern, Taz, ZEITmagazin and much more...

Corporate Work

Computacenter AG, AVI Music, SAP, Hewlett Packard, GE Compunet GE Capital, Rational AG, Sal Oppenheim, EBV, Dr. Blumrath & Partner, Deutsche Postbank AG, Advesto, Deutsche Telekom AG, Claus Koch Corporate Communications, BBDO Group, Boesner GmbH, Sparkasse KölnBonn, Haniel AG, Fink & Fuchs Public Relations, Greenpeace, Kochs & Kochs Public Relation, muehlhaus & moers kommunikation and much more...

About publishing photography

For me, a vintage print is more a form of publication than an object, and my exhibitions are intended more as an extended form of publication. At the same time, a photograph in a magazine is more of an artistic object that becomes visible to a mass audience.
Photography is communication, documentation and object at the same time. The different forms of appearance change the perspectives and impressions of the respective photography and thus also allow for an expansion of the possibilities of knowledge.
Furthermore, the free handling of the form of publication also leads to a heterogeneous audience, which I prefer and appreciate very much.


Edition Sakrament & Sünde, Van der Grinten, 2005


Angela Merkel in Bloomberg Magazine, 2018


Wahl Kampf Ritual, 2013


Art Karlsruhe 2017, Wahl Kampf Ritual, Booth in focus galerie