What to expect of the October-long photostream (Sep 28-Oct 31), with institutions across the city taking different angles on the medium.
From the famous “photo island” behind Zoologischer Garten, where you’ll find C/O Berlin, Camera Work and the Helmut Newton Foundation, to the strong focus on lens-based works at major contemporary art spaces such as Gropius Bau, the Berlinische Galerie and Kindl – Berlin is never deprived of a good photo exhibition. Broadening the horizons even further, the biennial European Month of Photography (EMOP) held in October treats Berliners to Germany’s largest photographic display. Kicking off at the end of September to coincide with Berlin Art Week, this year’s festival includes over 100 institutions, project venues and cultural spaces, not to mention embassies all across town. Here’s a glimpse of what to expect.
The Niels Borch Jensen Gallery, with the group show Photogravure (through Oct 31), will be focusing on classic print works by Thomas Demand, Elmgreen & Dragnet and Markus Draper. Meanwhile, Ping without Pong—Gesture without Response (through Oct 28) at COPYRIGHTberlin, takes the digital angle by featuring computer-generated images by Sylvia Henrich and Stefanie Seufert. Freak at Codex explores human and photographic abnormalities (by appointment only, through Oct 31), and C/O Berlin’s Back to the Future centres around the juxtaposition of the digital and the analogue (through Dec 2, see below). The Willy Brandt Haus, in a much-needed attempt to battle the chronic underrepresentation of female photographers, will be showing Vivian Maier, the ubiquitous nanny-turned-photographer from the 1950s, and works on Frida Kahlo by Bernice Kolko (both specials through Jan 6).
Overall, the more diverse approaches to photography are represented by the established art institutions, but EMOP Berlin also serves as an important platform for young photographers. For a fresh impression head to Seen By #10: conlang, a cooperative project between the Museum für Fotografie and the graduates of Universität der Künste Berlin (through Oct 7), or the graduate shows analog at the Neue Schule für Fotografie and Views at F16/Schule für Fotografie (both through Oct 3). Check out our top picks and the EMOP website for a full catalogue and an interactive map – your October should be framed in a flash!
The Moment is Eternity An exciting best-of showcase from the Olbricht Collection that’s part of both Berlin Art Week and EMOP Berlin. Displaying roughly 300 works by around 60 artists, combining works of the crème de la crème across contemporary art and photography. Featured artists include Gerhard Richter, August Sander, Cindy Sherman, Emil Nolde, Louis Faurer, Zoe Lenard and Lee Friedlander.
Sep 26- Mar 31 Olbricht Collection, Mitte
Mansilla The village Mansilla in the north of Spain was demolished during Franco’s dictatorship in the 1960s to make way for a new reservoir. The villagers lost their homes and were relocated to a new village placed right on a cliff. Depending on the water levels, the residents can still see their old homes through the water. In Mansilla, photographer Verónica Losantos portraits the village and the residents mixing her analogue images with archive material and collages. Losantos’ work is a beautiful homage to loss, collective memory and change.
Sep 30-Nov 3 Pavel’s Dog, Mitte
Manhattan Sunday In this exhibition American photographer Richard Renaldi presents a personal account of Manhattan nightlife. Renaldi photographs his subjects when the night ends, when they spill out of the clubs into the streets of the sleeping city – those fragile early hours still full of desires and dreams before the day starts and reality kicks in. A brilliant collection of portraits, urban landscapes, and interiors of bars and clubs.
Sep 8-Nov 10 Robert Morat Gallery, Mitte
Black Years: Berlin Journals 1985 Having fled the dictatorship in Czechoslovakia in 1985 for West Berlin, Libuše Jarcovjáková portraits her grim new life in the divided city. Also known as the Czech Nan Goldin, she photographs people and places both day and night. Her black and white photographs shown in Black Years: Berlin Journals 1985 – 1990 are a harsh social study of Berlin city life at a time she was seeking freedom in her work and own life. Absorbing and unsettling.
Sep 30-Nov 22 Czech Centre Berlin, Mitte
Golden Hearts This exhibition features Sibylle Bergemann’s series Clärchens Ballhaus (1976) alongside Yate’s Wine Lodges (1983) by Martin Parr. The black and white photographs in both series are great studies on communal and leisure life in Berlin and Nottingham respectively. Famous for his later flashy colour work, it’s an absolute treat to see Parr’s often forgotten black and white works from the 1980s.
Sep 27-Dec 21 LOOCK Gallery, Tiergarten