"After seeing one photograph made by Christer Strömholm (a cemetery at night with dark footprints in the snow), Petersen went back to Sweden to meet and study photography with Strömholm between 1966 and 1968. Then he returned to Hamburg, where over the course of several years and many many late nights, he took the photos that became his first book, Cafè Lehmitz.
Since then, he has gone on to publish more than 20 books, almost all of which feel like personal diaries of his experiences with people and places that are only encountered in the outskirts of towns or under cover of darkness.
For an extend period of time, he practically lived in a high-security prison to make the photographs for his 1984 book, Fängelse. He has also documented, in his highly personal style, the people in an insane asylum, and others living in a home for old people. In each body of work, Anders Petersen forces us to regard — from often uncomfortably close vantage points — situations and people that most of us would avoid at all costs. Yet, what he reveals is tenderness, beauty, and common humanity."