Mishka Henner, Joachim Schmid, Tobias Zielony
Opening: 04.12.2014, 7 pm
Curated by: Sabine Gamper and Nicoló Degiorgis
Mishka Henner and Joachim Schmid will be present.
Exhibition: 05.12.2014 – 24.01.2015
This exhibition launches a new project series at gallery foto-forum that critically engages with the cultural technique of documentary photography. During the course of two years and through multiple stages, outstanding exponents of documentary photography will be asked to exhibit on a whole array of issues. The individual exhibitions will be accompanied by a series of catalogues, and from one project to the other a new volume will be created for each. After the project’s completion, all single issues will be republished as one book. International authors contribute texts on the individual photographers in order to create an up-to-date discourse on critical documentary practices.
The books will be published at Rorhof Verlag Bozen (which received the 2014 photobook-prize in Arles, and the german photobook-prize in 2015), and in sponsoring cooperation with Longogroup. Marco Bohr (GB), Garry Badger (GB) and Seraphine Meya (DE) contributed texts to the current issue.
Through the photographic works of Joachim Schmid (born 1955 in Balingen, lives and works in Berlin), Mishka Henner (born 1976 in Brussels, lives and works in Manchester) and Tobias Zilony (born 1973 in Wuppertal, lives and works in Berlin), the exhibition explores exiting documentary strategies in contemporary photography and critically screens the issue of hierarchies within the practice of documentary photography. The exhibition will be complemented by artist’s books featuring the three participants as well as video portraits and the exhibition catalogue. Using the example of these three photographic positions, we demonstrate how hierarchical structures intrinsic to the pictorial regimes of photography can be reflected in different ways by means of critical and sometimes subversive procedures. What is at issue here is to become aware of the historical determinations of photographic imagery, and to discuss the function of the medium at its fragile border between authenticity and construction.
Miskha Henner works with imaging systems like e.g. the surveillance apparatuses of Google Street View or Google Earth, which he uses as pictorial materials for his documentary practice. With this procedure he draws a parallel between documentary practices and allegedly ‘objective’ systems of image recording in order to critically scrutinize them. Joachim Schmid with his series “Pictures from the Street” (Bilder von der Stra?e), an array of snapshots and amateur photographs he collected between 1982 and 2007 on the streets of multiple cities, is heading into a similar direction, namely towards the question how photographs whose authors and origin are unknown can be inserted into a classical art discourse and a hierarchical system of meaning and attribution. Tobias Zilony, on the other hand, in his photographic work is dealing with everyday life situations of juveniles at the margins of our society. Contrasting Joachim Schmid and Miskha Henner, he travels the street with his own camera, where time and again he manages to actively involve people living beyond societal norms as co-authors of his photographic projects.
Photo artists with a critical approach are breaking wholly new ground on the question of documentary practice with the aim of capturing societal realities in an adequate and contemplative way. They are taking their time to unlock the backgrounds, criticize stereotypes and test more complex ways of representation. And ultimately, only through a more open handling of one’s own artistic procedures it is possible to uncover the system of the power of images and the unconscious patterns of narration, — by way of reflecting upon the technological, discursive and narrative tools that are utilized to construct reality through the photographic image.
Joachim Schmid and P420, Bologna
Tobias Zielony and KOW Berlin
Mishka Henner and Carroll/Fletcher Gallery
Consolato Generale di Germania, Milano
With the support of
Provincia Autonoma di Bolzano
Comune di Bolzano
Consolato Generale di Germania, Milano
In collaboration with