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Jeff Wall. Transit

June 20 to October 10, 2010

On the occasion of the reopening of the Albertinum, the Kunsthalle in the Lipsius building is displaying works by Jeff Wall, one of the most important photographers of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Close by the Albertinum, which shows art from Romanticism to the present, the exhibition will shine a bright light on contemporary art.

Until Jeff Wall became one of the first artists to work with light boxes, photography was displayed in black and white, in small formats, like prints. By adopting the style of advertising in his works, Wall revolutionised photography. The exhibition shows 26 pieces by the Canadian photo artist from Vancouver; an impressive figure considering Jeff Wall’s meticulous methods and limited number of works.

There are examples of all three major groups of works in the Lipsius building: nineteen light boxes, six black-and-white photographs and one chromogenic colour print. They span 32 years of his work, from Doorpusher (1984) to his latest piece from 2009, Search of premises. The light box, with its documentary style, is one example of Jeff Wall’s “cinematographic” work. In it he fuses elements of photography, film and painting. Thus, the photographs are perfectly lit, reconstructed and extremely carefully planned. Often, digital montage is used to produce one seamless image composed of different versions, creating the impression of a freeze frame, like on a film set.

Jeff Wall’s modern allegories are based on gestures, formulaic images and principles of compositions from the past. Many motifs come from European art history, of which Jeff Wall has an excellent knowledge, having studied art history. Thus, Storyteller refers to Edouard Manet’s Le déjeuner sur l'herbe, and the Doorpusher, with his stylised gesture of blessing, is reminiscent of Christ at the Last Supper.

An exhibition catalogue is to be published by Schirmer/Mosel. Ed. by Ulrich Bischoff and Mathias Wagner. With contributions by Laszlo Glozer, Thomas Weski, Ulrich Bischoff and Mathias Wagner, an interview with Jeff Wall by Jürgen Müller and Peter Geimer, and comments on all the pictures on display. (Museum edition: €35.90)

  • Bildergalerie Jeff Wall. Transit - Bild öffnet sich in einer Vergrößerungsansicht.
  • - Bild öffnet sich in einer Vergrößerungsansicht.
  • - Bild öffnet sich in einer Vergrößerungsansicht.
  • - Bild öffnet sich in einer Vergrößerungsansicht.
  • - Bild öffnet sich in einer Vergrößerungsansicht.
  • - Bild öffnet sich in einer Vergrößerungsansicht.