The Biennale für aktuelle Fotografie 2020
The Lives and Loves of Images
Curated by David Company
29 February – 26 April 2020
Photography has come to symbolise the extremes of contemporary society. It is deeply personal and yet thoroughly public. Freeing at times yet also limiting. Expressive yet culturally dominant. Pleasurable, but worrying. There is affection for photography, but we are or ought to be suspicious of its power and manipulations. If we are dependent upon the photographic image, as so many have claimed over the last century, this dependence gives us mixed feelings.
Across three cities, six museums and an extensive programme of talks, discussions and workshops, The Lives and Loves of Images explores how these tensions shape our understanding and appreciation of photography. A series of exhibitions, each thematically distinct, considers the hold, good and bad which photographs have over us, viewers and image makers alike.
Klenz is exhibited in All Art is Photography:
Photography has two relations to art. It can be an art in itself – expressive, subjective, creative, inventive. It can be the mechanical means by which all the other visual arts – from painting and sculpture to performance – are documented, reproduced and publicised. What we know of art, we often know through photographic images of it. Paintings we have never seen in real life. Sculptures we have never walked around.
In general, these two roles are kept separate, but photography and photographers are not respectful of boundaries. What happens when artistic photography takes the other arts as its subject matter? What can a camera do in a painter’s studio, in front of a sculpture, or in an art gallery full of people? This is what the exhibition All Art is Photography sets out to consider. Some of the photographic artists in this show reflect upon the cultural role of printed art books. Others concern themselves with looking again at physical spaces in which art is made and displayed. Others consider the camera’s complicated relation to paintings and sculptures as aesthetic objects.
With works by: Dennis Adams, Claudia Angelmaier, Tim Davis, Pablo Genovés, Maurice Jarnoux, Steffi Klenz, Mark Lewis, Josh Murfitt, Antonio Pérez Río, Nick Waplington, Ewa Monika Zebrowski
Link to Virtual Tour
Biennale für aktuelle Fotografie
The Biennale für aktuelle Fotografie takes place in the main exhibition halls of Mannheim, Ludwigshafen and Heidelberg. The biennial is characterised by the ideas of its internationally renowned guest curators, whose line-up changes every two years. Around 43.000 square feet of exhibition space provides room for a variety of current photographic positions and creates the framework to think about a medium that shapes our society like no other. At the same time, the manifold manifestations of photography are reflected in the variety of locations in which they are presented. An extensive educational program accompanies the exhibitions and promotes a lively exchange about photography.
Cultural organisers and supporters of the metropolitan region as well as national and international artists and partners work closely together to realise the Biennale für aktuelle Fotografie. It connects the three cities and their cultural institutions in an inter-city dialogue and has become a model for this cooperation nationwide.