Nicola Hackl-Haslinger is an Austrian artist. Her passion for photography started at a quite early age. She was about five years, when she was given her first Agfamatic camera. It was during her schooldays at the HBLA für Künstlerische Gestaltung when she started taking photos with a reflex camera and developing them in the darkroom. After her high school diploma she received training as a designer of jewelry, and in 1999 she was awarded the “Künstlerpunze” (artist`s hallmark). Alongside her work as a self-employed designer she started further training at the Prager Fotoschule Österreich. In 2011 she graduated with honors. From 2012 to 2016 she taught available light, portrait photography and the history of portrait photography as a lecturer at this photography school.

Working with metals - in combination with her photographs - is an essential element in the artist’s work. She often uses sheet metal, wire and also leaf metal. In addition to modern printing processes, Hackl-Haslinger is also interested in alternative photographic processes. Using a technique she developed herself in 2016, she is able to print photogravures directly onto 24 carat gold leaf.

Nicola Hackl-Haslinger was nominated for the Peace Award St. Leopold in 2016 and 2018. She also worked in collaboration with Oscar® winning composer, producer and pianist, Volker Bertelmann aka Hauschka.

In 2019, she formed an ongoing creative partnership with composer and 3D artist Peter Manhartsberger under the name albapura.

Nicola’s latest collaboration is with author Barbara Bullock-Wilson. Swan – A True Life Fairy Tale is the first of several illustrated stories they hope to work on together.

In 2023, her first monograph Beyond Time has been published.

Nicola Hackl-Haslinger’s photographs are represented nationally and internationally. Her work is in private collections and in the permanent collections of the Lentos Kunstmuseum Linz, Nordico Stadtmuseum Linz, Art Collection of Upper Austria, Schlossmuseum Linz - The Collection for Modern and Contemporary Art, Museum Angerlehner Thalheim, Gallery of Modern Art Klosterneuburg, Collection Erwin Hauser, The Paula Tognarelli Collection, Anton Bruckner Private University Linz, ESA - European Space Agency Paris, Museum Haus der Natur – Vega Observatory Salzburg, and Austrian National Library.


Artist Statement

“I am trying to get to the bottom of things, not only technically, but also in a psychological and symbolic sense. I take an observer’s position and I try to document latent moods and secret moments in low-key colors and formal exactness. Moreover, I am striving to create an atmosphere of vagueness, somehow linking what is inside with the exterior, a process of unveiling and bringing something to light! A recurring motif is the presentation of innermost states, both with regard to the intellect but also to emotions. The photographs challenge the beholder to look closer and, work out the different layers, each one telling their own stories. I try to invite the beholder to stand still and linger over what he sees and maybe, apart from the space that is provided for individual interpretation, also find a moment of peace and harmony in this fast-paced time! This is maybe also the reason why my favorite piece of equipment is my wonderful copper printing press dating from 1900! For me one of the most memorable experiences in my photographic work was the moment in 2017 when after a period that was marked by experiments, innumerable setbacks and misprints and which lasted more than two years – I succeeded in printing the first perfect photogravures on gold! At last I was able to combine both my passions - photography and gold smithery!”

One eye of the photographer looks wide open through the viewfinder, the other, the closed, looks into his own soul.

Henri Cartier-Bresson

© Peter Manhartsberger

© Peter Manhartsberger