Swaantje Güntzel (*1972) is a Hamburg based German artist. She holds a Masters Degree in Anthropology (University of Bonn) and completed postgraduate studies in Fine Arts at the School of Fine Arts in Hamburg (HfbK Hamburg). She worked as the assistant of Andreas Slominski and participated in numerous exhibitions in Germany as well as abroad and has received various grants especially in Scandinavia. In 2015 she won the biannual Ars Loci Art Award of the Neuhoff-Fricke Foundation for the Promotion of Arts and Science.
Her work addresses the alienated relationship between humanity and nature. She exposes the inconsistencies of our actions and the hypocrisy of our value system, drawing attention to the unthinking exploitation of the environment in the industrialized global economy. Güntzel´s art practise stems from a deeply held aesthetic position that explores the essential dichotomy between visual pleasure and disturbing global issues. The work is an unsettling critique of modern life in the 21st century.
She works conceptually across a range of different disciplines such as performance, sculpture, installation, photography, sound and video. Much of her work is inspired by scientific research.
One of the main concerns of her work is to find ways to to visualize anthropogenic pollution of the seas and the presence of plastic in our everyday lives and to bring it into consciousness.