Posts Tagged ‘Deichtorhallen Hamburg

05
Jun
13

Exhibition: ‘Harry Callahan Retrospective’ at the House of Photography at Deichtorhallen Hamburg

Exhibition dates: 22nd March – 9th June 2013

 

Harry Callahan. 'Eleanor, Chicago' 1948

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Eleanor, Chicago
1948
Gelatin silver print
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

 

Great to see some early colour photographs from this master.

Marcus

.
Many thankx to the House of Photography, Deichtorhallen Hamburg for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

 

 

Harry Callahan. 'Eleanor' 1947

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Eleanor
1947
Gelatin silver print
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

Stephan Brigidi. 'Harry Callahan, Bristol' 1993

 

Stephan Brigidi (American, b. 1951)
Harry Callahan, Bristol
1993
© Stephan Brigidi

 

Harry Callahan. 'Providence' 1979

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Providence
1979
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

 

Harry Callahan (1912-1999) is regarded as one of the most innovative and influential artists in the history of 20th-century US photography. Deichtorhallen Hamburg is taking the artist’s creative intensity, the aesthetic standing his oeuvre enjoys in the context of 20th-century US photography and the fact that 2012 marked the 100th anniversary of his birth as an opportunity to present his oeuvre in an extensive retrospective with over 280 works from March 22 through June 9, 2013. The exhibition is to date the most extensive show of his work, and includes both his black-and-white gelatin silver prints and his colour works produced using the dye-transfer process.

Harry Callahan was one of the first to overcome the prevailing aesthetics of Realism by advancing the New Vision, which László Moholy-Nagy had established in the New Bauhaus in Chicago, and Ansel Adams’ so-called “straight photography” in an innovative, highly sensitive way. Between 1946 and 1997 the Museum of Modern Art in New York alone honoured Callahan’s photographic oeuvre in a total of 38 exhibitions. Together with the painter Richard Diebenkorn, Callahan represented the USA at the 1978 Venice Biennale, the first photographer ever to do so. Nonetheless, in Europe Callahan’s multifaceted work is still considered a rarity in the history of photography.

In addition to photographs of nature and landscapes, Callahan’s oeuvre, spanning a period of nearly 60 years as of 1938, embraces pictures of his daily strolls through cities such as Detroit, Chicago, Providence, Atlanta, and New York. Portrayed frequently in very intense light, his leitmotifs were streets, shop windows, buildings and pedestrians hurrying past. Very early on he regarded photography as a purely artistic medium, and saw himself as an art photographer rather than a representative of applied photography. In later years other works, in which his wife Eleanor and daughter Barbara were the focal point, were superseded by another major experiment: the photographs he took on numerous trips to France, Italy, Morocco, Portugal, and Ireland. His works document the emergence of Modernism, which was taking an ever-greater hold on everyday life. Relating to his three main themes, nature, the familiar figure of his wife Eleanor, and cities, Callahan’s images reflect his life in ever-new references that become increasingly less interwoven with one another. At the same time they trace the social and cultural transformation in the USA discreetly, elegantly, and with a tendency to abstraction, recording the changes as a seismograph does earth tremors. In his images Callahan consistently reflects on both his own and the camera’s way of seeing.

Compiled by Sabine Schnakenberg, the exhibition at the House of Photography continues the series of major photographic retrospectives of internationally renowned representatives of photographic history previously staged at the Deichtorhallen in Hamburg, including Martin Munkacsi (2005), Lillian Bassman, Paul Himmel (2009), and Saul Leiter (2012). The exhibition is based on loans from two generous lenders, namely the Estate of Harry Callahan together with the Pace / MacGill Gallery in New York, and the extensive selection of Callahan’s images from F.C. Gundlach’s photographic collection, both those on permanent loan to Deichtorhallen as well as those in the collection of the F.C. Gundlach Foundation.

Press release from Deichtorhallen Hamburg website

 

Harry Callahan. 'Atlanta' 1943

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Atlanta
1943
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

Harry Callahan. 'Detroit' 1943

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Detroit
c. 1943
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

Harry Callahan. 'Chicago' 1951

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Chicago
1951
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

Harry Callahan. 'Eleanor, Chicago' 1951

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Eleanor, Chicago
1951
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

Harry Callahan. 'Providence' 1978

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Providence
1978
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

Harry Callahan. 'Ireland' 1979

 

Harry Callahan (American, 1912-1999)
Ireland
1979
© The Estate of Harry Callahan. Courtesy Pace/MacGill Gallery, New York

 

 

Deichtorhallen Hamburg
Deichtorstrasse 1-2
20095
Hamburg
Phone: +49 (0)40 32103-0

Opening hours:
Tuesday – Sunday 11am – 6pm
Closed Mondays

Deichtorhallen Hamburg website

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05
Aug
12

Exhibition: ‘Wim Wenders: Places, strange and quiet’ at Sammlung Falckenberg, Hamburg

Exhibition dates: 15th April – 19th August 2012

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945) 'Walled In' 2005

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
Walled In
2005
Digital C-print
131 x 125cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

 

I’m not a fan of these “moody,” “simple, composed with clean lines and brilliant colours and mostly unpopulated” photographs. They just don’t do it for me. I want photography to show me something, some essence of life that I have not seen, and then let the photograph speak to me again and again, to reveal itself over weeks and years. This doesn’t happen with these photographs. They are such derivate, plain photographs and they certainly don’t take me places that are strange and quiet.

Wenders should learn how to frame a photograph properly. The bottom left hand corner of Sun Bather, Palermo (2007, below) is just an empty negative space that simply falls out the photograph. There is no containment here, no tensioning of the diagonal of the rocks and the line of the sun beds. The photographer has even tried to “burn in” the pavement to hold up this area of image (notice how the contrast has increased!), to no avail. A poorly visualised photograph. The same can be said for the left hand side of Open Air Screen, Palermo (2007, below). The photographer simply shows no understanding of how to construct a photograph, not a film. The only photograph that takes me to a strange and quiet place is the early image Dinosaur and Family, California (1983, below). Now this really works, the light, the family, the dinosaur, the eeriness and stillness. Yes.

Usually I don’t say a harsh word on my blog but not in this case. Wim Wenders, you might be a great film director but please, stay away from photography. There are more interesting places for people to go, more deserving of their energy than looking at these overrated images.

Dr Marcus Bunyan

.
Many thanx to Sammlung Falckenberg and Deichtorhallen Hamburg for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

 

Wim Wenders. 'The Chopper' 2005

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
The Chopper
2005
Digital C-print
124.5 x 125cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

Wim Wenders. 'Cowboy Clown, Brisbane' 2006

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
Cowboy Clown, Brisbane
2006
C-print
132 x 148cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

Wim Wenders. 'Policeman, Heiligendamm' 2007

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
Policeman, Heiligendamm
2007
C-print
132 x 148cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

 

The Falckenberg Collection presents in cooperation with Wenders Images Berlin an exhibition of photographs by the internationally renowned filmmaker and artist Wim Wenders (b. 1945). Bringing together almost 60 images, taken from 1983 to 2011, this show entitled “Places, strange and quiet” will feature many photographs not yet exhibited in Germany including several very recent works.

For “Places, strange and quiet” Wenders has assembled a fascinating series of large scale photographs taken in countries around the world from Salvador, Brazil; Palermo, Italy; Onomichi, Japan to Berlin, Germany; Brisbane, Australia, Armenia and the United States. From his iconic images of exteriors and buildings to his panoramic depictions of towns and landscapes, the exhibition will present the full range of Wenders’ work, exploring how he created and honed remarkable images that continue to resonate powerfully.

In his own words, “When you travel a lot, and when you love to just wander around and get lost, you can end up in the strangest spots. I have a huge attraction to places. Already when I look at a map, the names of mountains, villages, rivers, lakes or landscape formations excite me, as long as I don’t know them and have never been there … I seem to have sharpened my sense of place for things that are out of place. Everybody turns right, because that’s where it’s interesting, I turn left where there is nothing! And sure enough, I soon stand in front of my sort of place. I don’t know, it must be some sort of inbuilt radar that often directs me to places that are strangely quiet, or quietly strange.”

Wim Wenders is a multi-faceted artist: a painter, actor, writer and one of the most successful contemporary filmmakers. He first made his name as a leading director of the New German Cinema in the 1970s, and became a cult figure on the international film scene by the mid 1980s. It was in 1983, while scouting for locations for Paris, Texas (1984) that he began to use photography as an art medium in its own right. Wim Wenders was born in Düsseldorf in 1945. After two years of studying medicine and philosophy and a yearlong stay in Paris as a painter he attended the University of Television and Film in Munich from 1967 to 1970.

One of the most important figures to emerge from the “New German Cinema” period in the 1970s, he was a founding member of the German film distribution “Filmverlag der Autoren” in 1971 and he established his own production company “Road Movies” in Berlin in 1975. Alongside directing atmospheric auteur films Wenders works with the medium of photography, and his poignant images of desolate landscapes engage themes including memory, time and movement. A major survey of his photography, “Pictures from the surface of the Earth,” was exhibited in museums and art institutions worldwide. Wim Wenders has published numerous books with essays and photographs.”

Press release from the Deichtorhallen Hamburg website

 

Wim Wenders. 'Street Corner Butte, Montana' 2003

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
Street Corner Butte, Montana
2003
C-print
186 x 224cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

Wim Wenders. 'Dinosaur and Family, California' 1983

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
Dinosaur and Family, California
1983
C-print
127.7 x 168.3 x 5cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

Wim Wenders. 'Sun Bather, Palermo' 2007

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
Sun Bather, Palermo
2007
C-print
132 x 148cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

Wim Wenders. 'Open Air Screen, Palermo' 2007

 

Wim Wenders (German, b. 1945)
Open Air Screen, Palermo
2007
C-Print
186 x 213cm
Courtesy Wenders Images

 

 

Sammlung Falckenberg | Phoenix Kulturstiftung
Wilstorfer Straße 71, Tor 2
21073 Hamburg – Harburg

Opening hours:
Each Sunday from 12 until 5 pm, no prior registration required

Sammlung Falckenberg website

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06
Apr
12

Exhibition: ‘Saul Leiter Retrospective’ at The House of Photography at Deichtorhallen Hamburg

Exhibition dates: 3rd February – 15th April 2012

 

Saul Leiter. 'Joanna' c. 1947

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Joanna
c. 1947
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

 

“I always assumed that I would simply be forgotten and disappear from view.”

.
Saul Leiter

 

 

The second of two postings on the colour photography of Saul Leiter. The first posting was for the exhibition Saul Leiter: New York Reflections at the Jewish Historical Museum, Amsterdam, October 2011 – March 2012. This exhibition is the first major retrospective of his work. At last this artist seems to be getting the recognition he deserves!

The prosaic nature of the titles of the photographs belies their complexity. They remind me of the refractions of Lee Friedlander, the colour fields of Mark Rothko, the emotional intensity of Abstract Expressionism and the impression of spontaneous, subconscious creation that is Surrealism. His photographs are the glorious spirit of the city writ large – unique, atmospheric and with great psychological use of colour and space. I can’t think of any other colour photographer of the era (or for that matter, any era) that occludes the picture plane as much as Leiter does, and to such psychological affect, as in the last two photographs in this posting. The viewer becomes like a Peeping Tom, a voyeur of the world. Leiter deserves to be one of the modern masters of colour photography. I am so glad that he hasn’t disappeared from view. The world would be a poorer place without his visualisation.

Dr Marcus Bunyan

.
Many thankx to The House of Photography at Deichtorhallen for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

 

 

Saul Leiter. 'Untitled (Self-portrait)' 1950s

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Untitled (Self-portrait)
1950s
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Phone Call' c. 1957

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Phone Call
c. 1957
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Postmen' 1952

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Postmen
1952
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Walking' 1956

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Walking
1956
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Shopping' c. 1953

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Shopping
c. 1953
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

 

“Leiter is a rare artist, one whose vision is so encompassing, so refined, so in touch with a certain lyrical undertone, that his best photographs occasionally seem literally to transcend the medium.”

.
Jane Livingston

 

 

House of Photography at Deichtorhallen will from February 3 to April 15, 2012 be highlighting the oeuvre of 88-year-old photographer and painter Saul Leiter in the world’s first major retrospective. The exhibition covers more than 400 works and brings together in marvellous combination his early black-and-white and colour photographs, fashion images, painted-over nude photographs, paintings and his sketchbooks, which have never gone on public view before. Then final chapter in the exhibition is dedicated to Saul Leiter’s most recent photographic works, which he continues to take on the streets in his neighbourhood in New York’s East Village.

 Saul Leiter was born in 1923 in Pittsburgh and it was not until a few years ago that his work received due recognition for its pioneering role in the emergence of colour photography. As early as 1946, and thus well before the representatives of New Color Photography in the 1970s (such as William Eggleston and Stephen Shore) he was one of the first to use colour photography, despite it being despised by artists of the day, for his free artistic shots.

“The older photo-aesthetic views on the hegemony of black-and-white and the dating in photo history of the artistic use of color photography to the early 1970s need to be critically revisited. With Saul Leiter’s oeuvre, the history of photography essentially has to be rewritten,” comments curator Ingo Taubhorn. 

Saul Leiter has always seen himself as both painter and photograph. In his painting and in his photographs he tends clearly to abstraction and a surface feel. Often there are large, deep black surfaces caused by shadows that take up as much as three quarters of the photographs. These are images that do not present passers-by as individuals, but as blurred colour impulses, behind panes of glass or wedges between house walls and traffic signs. He espouses a fluid transition between the abstract and the figurative in his paintings and photographs. Saul Leiter’s street photography, and in this genre his work is quite without precedent, is actually painting that has become photography, as Rolf Nobel writes in the book accompanying the exhibition.

 

On Saul Leiter

Saul Leiter discovered his passion for art at an early date and started painting as a teenager at the end of the 1940s. His family did not support him in his artistic endeavours as his father, a renowned Talmudic rabbi and scholar, always hoped his son Saul would one day follow him in the family tradition and become a rabbi. Leiter was self-taught, but by no means uneducated. He read and learned a lot about art, such that his knowledge and understanding constantly grew. In this way, he could be certain that his own thought and artistic efforts were duly related to the historical context, as Carrie Springer, curator at the Whitney Museum in New York, points out in the catalog.

 In 1946, shortly after he had moved to New York, Leiter got to know Richard Poussette-Dart, who introduced him to photography, a medium that Leiter found very much to his liking and which he quickly made his own. Leiter soon resolved to make use of photography not only as a means of making art but as a way of earning a living. He started taking fashion photographs and thanks to his good eye, his playful sense of humour, and his pronounced sense of elegance, swiftly emerged as an extraordinary fashion photographer.
 In the 1950s, LIFE magazine brought out the first photo-spreads of Saul Leiter’s first black-and-white images. For example, he took part in the exhibition on Always the young strangers (1953) curated by Edward Steichen at the Museum of Modern Art. From 1958 to 1967, Leiter worked for Harper’s Bazaar. All in all he was to spend some 20 years photographing for both the classic magazines and more recent ones, such as Esquire and Harper’s: Show, Elle, British Vogue, Queen and Nova.

Saul Leiter was born in 1923 in Pittsburgh and has lived since 1946 in New York. For over 40 years, until her death in 2002 New York artist Soames Bantry was his partner. During the preparations for the Hamburg exhibition, Saul Leiter once remarked that he wished that Soames Bantry has received the same attention from the art world as he is now receiving. This spawned the idea of an homage to Soames Bantry, an exhibition in the exhibition at House of Photography that Saul Leiter has himself curated – with over 20 paintings: For Soames with Love Saul. 

In his photographs, the genres of street life, portraiture, still lifes, fashion and architectural photography meld. He comes across his themes, such as shop windows, passers-by, cars, signs and (a recurrent motif) umbrellas, in the direct vicinity of his apartment in New York, where he has now lived for almost 60 years. The lack of clear detail, the blurring of movement and the reduction in depth of field, the compensation for or deliberate avoidance of the necessary light as well as the alienation caused by photographing through windows and by reflections all blend to create a language of colour fuelled by a semi-real, semi-abstract urban space. These are the works of an as good as undiscovered modern master of colour photography of the 1940s and 1950s. The Hamburg exhibition and the major monograph by Kehrer Verlag seek to prevent this happening.

Press release from The House of Photography website

 

Saul Leiter. 'Red Umbrella' c. 1958

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Red Umbrella
c. 1958
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Snow' 1960

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Snow
1960
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Man with Straw Hat' c. 1955

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Man with Straw Hat
c. 1955
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Pizza, Patterson' 1952

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Pizza, Patterson
1952
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Canopy' c. 1957

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Canopy
c. 1957
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

Saul Leiter. 'Through Boards' c. 1957

 

Saul Leiter (American, 1923-2013)
Through Boards
c. 1957
© Saul Leiter
Courtesy: Saul Leiter, Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York

 

 

Deichtorhallen Hamburg
Deichtorstrasse 1-2
20095
Hamburg
Phone: +49 (0)40 32103-0

Opening hours:
Tuesday – Sunday 11am – 6pm
Closed Mondays

Deichtorhallen Hamburg website

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15
May
11

Exhibition: ‘Gilbert & George: Jack Freak Pictures’ at Deichtorhallen Hamburg

Exhibition dates: 25th February – 22nd May 2011

 

Gilbert & George standing in front of ‘Metal Jack’ (2008) from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ on show at Deichtorhallen Hamburg

 

Gilbert & George standing in front of Metal Jack (2008) from the series Jack Freak Pictures on show at Deichtorhallen Hamburg
Photo: Fred Dott © Deichtorhallen Hamburg/Fred Dott

 

 

“We are unhealthy, middle-aged, dirty-minded, depressed, cynical, empty, tired-brained, seedy, rotten, dreaming, badly-behaved, ill-mannered, arrogant, intellectual, self-pitying, honest, successful, hard-working, thoughtful, artistic, religious, fascistic, blood-thirsty, teasing, destructive, ambitious, colourful, damned, stubborn, perverted and good. We are artists.”

.
Gilbert & George, 1980

 

 

More from the Jack Freak picture show!

Marcus

.
Many thankx to Deichtorhallen Hamburg for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

 

 

Installation view of ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ by Gilbert & George at Deichtorhallen Hamburg

Installation view of ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ by Gilbert & George at Deichtorhallen Hamburg

 

Installation views of Jack Freak Pictures by Gilbert & George at Deichtorhallen Hamburg
Photos: Fred Dott © Deichtorhallen Hamburg/Fred Dott

 

 

According to the writer Michael Bracewell, “the Jack Freak Pictures are among the most iconic, philosophically astute and visually violent works that Gilbert & George have ever created.” The dominant pictorial element is the Union Jack, itself an internationally familiar, abstract, geometric pattern and a socially and politically charged symbol whose significance spans the cultural spectrum from contemporary fashion to aggressive national pride. Equally prominent, and linking the Jack Freak Pictures to almost every work previously created by the artists, are Gilbert & George themselves in a variety of guises: dancing, gurning, howling, watching, waiting. Sometimes their bodies seem complete; other times they have been fragmented or contorted. Invariably they feature as both subject and object, artwork and artist; they are players in the epic and complex pictorial drama they have created.

Set in the East End of London where Gilbert & George have lived and worked for over forty years, the Jack Freak Pictures bring numerous aspects of the modern world to life. Medals, flags, maps, street-signs, graffiti and other less immediately obvious motifs jostle for attention with the brickwork, buildings and even foliage of the contemporary urban environment in works that are densely layered and complexly nuanced to evoke (and sometimes conflate) a sense of past, present and future. They raise fundamental and rudimentary questions about religion, identity, politics, economics, sexuality and death. The Jack Freak Pictures reaffirm Gilbert & George’s status as pre-eminent Modernists and underline Robert Rosenblum’s observation that “of the singularity of their duality in life as art, there is little doubt.” Michael Bracewell’s view that they are “visionary artists in the lineage of William Blake” rings truer now than ever before.

Text from the White Cube website [Online] Cited 12/05/2011 no longer available online

 

Gilbert & George. ‘Christian England’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
Christian England from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
254 x 528 cm
© Gilbert & George

 

Gilbert & George. ‘Frigidarium’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
Frigidarium from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
381 x 604 cm
© Gilbert & George

 

Gilbert & George. ‘Street Party’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
Street Party from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
381 x 604 cm
© Gilbert & George

 

 

With its major spring show, Deichtorhallen Hamburg is once again bringing stars of the international art world to Hamburg. Gilbert & George (born 1943 and 1942) have long since been acknowledged icons of contemporary art.

The exhibition will present the latest, wide-ranging group of pictures they have ever created. Called the “Jack Freak Pictures”. They will be on display in the cathedral-like setting of the large Deichtorhalle from February 25 to May 22, 2011 for the first time more or less in its entirety – some 120 pictures will be on view.

Gilbert & George’s large-format pictures present decidedly sacred and secular themes. In this case, Gilbert & George have created a group around the British national symbol, the Union Jack, with all its different connotations, from symbol of national pride through to the cult symbol of the British Pop Music world and countercultures. Surrounded by medals and amulets, the streets of London and the red, blue and white design of the British flag, as in their previous art here Gilbert & George are not only the creators of their own world of images, but also act as protagonists in it.

The “Jack Freak Pictures” are among the most symbolic, philosophically most elaborate and visually striking art Gilbert & George have ever created. Within Gilbert & George’s oeuvre as a whole they constitute the powerful concentration of the themes and emotions that the artists have now been exploring in their art for more than 40 years. In these pictures, the artists play the roles of both victim and monster, puppets of a cosmic revue, sleepless guardians of empty big-city streets and crazy-looking talking heads, as Michael Bracewell outlines in his essay in the exhibition catalog. The large pictures, do not address the individual constitution of the two artists but instead point up states of human existence and can be read as a description of the modern world from the artists’ point of view.

The exhibition is being organised by Deichtorhallen Hamburg and the British Council and will move on from Hamburg, albeit it on a smaller scale, to Lentos Kunstmuseum, Linz, Austria. Hatje Cantz Verlag has brought out a catalog with an essay by Michael Bracewell and colour illustrations of all 153 works in the series.

Text from the Deichtorhallen Hamburg website

 

Gilbert & George. ‘War Dance’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
War Dance from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
151 x 190 cm
© Gilbert & George

 

Gilbert & George. ‘Britainers’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
Britainers from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
254 x 302 cm
© Gilbert & George

 

Gilbert & George. ‘Stuff Religion’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
Stuff Religion from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
317 x 302 cm
© Gilbert & George

 

Gilbert & George. ‘Union Dance’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
Union Dance from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
© Gilbert & George

 

Gilbert & George. ‘Brits’ from the series ‘Jack Freak Pictures’ 2008

 

Gilbert & George
Brits from the series Jack Freak Pictures
2008
226 x 190 cm
© Gilbert & George

 

 

Deichtorhallen Hamburg
Deichtorstrasse 1-2
20095 HAMBURG
Tel. +49 (0)40 32103-0

Opening hours:
Tuesday – Sunday 11 am – 6 pm
Closed Mondays

Deichtorhallen Hamburg website

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Dr Marcus Bunyan

Dr Marcus Bunyan is an Australian artist and writer. His art work explores the boundaries of identity and place. He writes Art Blart, an art and cultural memory archive, which posts mainly photography exhibitions from around the world. He holds a Doctor of Philosophy from RMIT University, Melbourne, a Master of Arts (Fine Art Photography) from RMIT University, and a Master of Art Curatorship from the University of Melbourne.

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Marcus Bunyan black and white archive: ‘Orphans and small groups’ 1994-96 Part 2

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