Michael Wolf is a German artist and photographer who lives and works in Hong Kong and Paris. Wolf was born in Germany and was raised in the United States, Europe, and Canada. He attended the North Toronto Collegiate Institute and the University of California, Berkeley. In 1976 he obtained a degree in visual communication at the University of Essen, Germany, where he studied with Otto Steinert.
Wolf began his career as a photojournalist, spending eight years working in Hong Kong for the German magazine Stern. He won a first prize in Contemporary Issues in the 2004 World Press Photo competition for his photographs for an article in Stern entitled China: Factory of the World. The photographs depicted workers in several types of factories.
Wolf states that a decline in the magazine industry led to photojournalism assignments becoming “stupid and boring.” In 2003 he decided to work only on fine-art photography projects.