Beate Gütschow, S#11, 2005. Courtesy Eric and Louise Franck, London, Beate Gütschow, © VG Bild-Kunst Bonn 2011.
DIALOGUES: BEATE GÜTSCHOW - TOMAS RAMBERG
Duration of exhibition:
2 September - 9 November 2011
Thursday, 1 September, 19.00-21.00
Performance by Torbjørn Sletta Jacobsen. Schandorffs gate 4
Dialogues is a project and exhibition initiated by Fotogalleriet and brings together the German artist Beate Gütschow (b. 1970 Mainz, Germany) and the Norwegian, Oslo-based artist Tomas Ramberg (b. Oslo 1973).
Both artists, although not explicitly trained in photography, use the medium as an important reference point in their work to challenge specific notions attributed to the perception of the photographic image. It is in particular their engagement with the subject of perspective that Gütschow's and Ramberg's works relate to each other, triggering a set of dialogues both on a formal and conceptual level.
Tomas Ramberg's site-specific project Mo(new)ments reveals historical and fictitious stories connected to the city of Oslo and visualizes them in three specific locations in Fotogalleriet's neighbourhood: Mariboesgate 16 (position 1), Møllergata 54 (position 2) and Schandorffs gate 4 (position 3).
Each position marks the cross-point of lines cutting imaginatively through the city, pointing to important locations in Ramberg's stories. The position on Mariboesgate, for example, refers to the story of the first professional male nude photo taken by a Norwegian female photographer in 1929. According to the position or angle the visitor takes, horizontal yellow lines on various surfaces of Mariboesgate 16 appear, reconstructing camera angle used by the female photographer at the time.
A further layer in Ramberg's work is introduced when entering Fotogalleriet: the positions in public space also act as reference points in a wall-drawing called 'The Location of Fotogalleriet' (referencing Sol LeWitt's 'Location Drawing' series) that locate Fotogalleriet inside a triangle formed by lines connecting the three positions. One of the axes on the map locating position 3 runs through Fotogalleriet and appears physically in the gallery space to encounter Beate Gütschow's work.
At Fotogalleriet Beate Gütschow shows works from her 'S' ('S' stands for 'Stadt'/'City') and 'I' series ('I' stands for 'Interieur'/'Interior'). The 'S' series takes as its starting point numerous analogue photographs of urban spaces (taken by the artist herself), which are then merged into a singular image to form a kind of dystopian architectural vision (or remnant of the past). At once familiar and alien, the photographs occupy an in-between space that shatters every presumed connection to time and place. Multiple perspectives and vanishing points add to a feeling of imbalance, yet leave a fascination for the urban spaces constructed by Gütschow.
In her 'I' series, Gütschow has taken the constructed image a step further by directly placing and juxtaposing carefully selected objects in front of the camera. The montage here takes place in actual space. In 'I 5', for example, an old overhead projector and a derelict bookshelf are carved out like precious items that speak of a distant past and pose questions as to their (former) relationship. Directional lighting highlights the objects on display, as if they were part of an archaeological exhibition or stage-set speaking of human behaviour and habits.
Beate Gütschow received her education from University of Fine Arts, Hamburg (1993-2000) and the Oslo National Academy of the Arts (1997). Beate Gütschow's work will be presented in Norway for the first time. Selected solo exhibitions took place at St Paul St Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand (2011), Sonnabend Gallery, New York (2009), Kunsthalle im Lipsiusbau, Dresden (2009) and Museum for Contemporary Photography, Chicago (2007).
Tomas Ramberg received his education from Hunter College, City University of New York (1999-2002), Oslo National Academy of the Arts (1996-2001) and National College of?Art and Design, Oslo (1993-1998). Recent exhibitions took place at Oslo Kunstforening, Oslo (2008), Jason Rulnick Gallery/ATM Gallery, ?New York (2008), Trygve Lie Gallery, New York (2005) and Galleri By the Way, Bergen (2004).