Models of Nature in Contemporary Photography

A group exhibition with Oliver Boberg, Sonja Braas, Julian Charrière, Shirley Wegner, and Thomas Wrede

January 11 to April 26, 2020
Opening:  Friday, January 10, 2020, 7-9pm
Opening remarks: Dr Christine Jádi, Curator

What is real and what is fake? What truths do we believe to see? Or is it all just an illusion? These questions have accompanied photography since its beginnings. Today in our contemporary media culture they play a more prominent role than ever before, and they are at the core of this exhibition, which is centered around the theme of “nature” and the imitation of the natural. Replicating a natural form entails different problems than reproducing a human-made form, which is in itself artificial. As true masters of illusion, the artists produce miniatures of imaginary places, seascapes, snow-covered landscapes, mountains, urban spaces, and the forces of nature. It is becoming increasingly difficult to discern the model from the real in photography, which often leaves viewers with the impression of a deceptively real image of nature.

This is exemplified in Sonja Braas’ works, in which we are violently confronted with the full dramatic force of catastrophes such as volcanic eruptions, tornados, or floods. Inspiring terror and fear, these natural spectacles are also exceptionally beautiful. Referencing romantic notions of the sublime, her images are best understood as commentaries on the omnipresent flood of images that surrounds us.

Thomas Wrede presents remote, unspecified, and inhospitable landscapes in his photographs. For his works, he selects a segment of a landscape, variable in size, where he places model buildings, miniature vehicles, or small toy trees. The proportions within the image shift, giving rise to a sense of confusion on the part of the viewer.

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