Vitra Design Museum Gallery
From the 1 February until 2 June 2013 an exhibition of the German photographer Thomas Florschuetz is shown at the Vitra Design Museum Gallery. The photographic subjects of the exhibition include two buildings by Louis Kahn, Oscar Niemeyer’s Brasilia, Neues Museum restored by David Chipperfield and the Palast der Republik in Berlin. Of particular interest to Florschuetz is the fragmentation of architecture and its presence in a picture. The fascination of the photographs lies in the tension between planar abstraction and spatial depth, between the social significance of the buildings and the archaic beauty of the traces left by the passage of time. Thomas Florschuetz is counted among the most important German photographers on the current scene. Like his contemporaries Thomas Ruff and Andreas Gursky, Florschuetz often focuses his view on architectural motifs. His initial engagement with architecture began with projects such as ‘Multiple Entry’ (1997), a photographic series of a window in his studio, or his ‘Vorhang’ curtain series, a group of photographs capturing the play of light and shadow, opacity and translucence. ‘Enclosures’, a group of works that commenced in 2001, is devoted to the subject of modern architecture and several of its iconic buildings. In these works, as well, Thomas Florschuetz shows an interest in fragmentation and its presence in an image — with examples ranging from the sculptural forms of Le Corbusier’s pilgrimage church in Ronchamps, to Louis Kahn’s complex spatial structures made of exposed con-crete or brick, to Oscar Niemeyer’s Brasilia. Although most of these buildings have been photo-graphed many times, Thomas Florschuetz succeeds in presenting a new view of them and revealing their inner character. The Neues Museum in Berlin, designed by Friedrich August Stüler, restored and remodelled by David Chipperfield, and observed by Thomas Florschuetz over a period of months during the renovation process, displays an intricate correlation of staggered spaces and temporal stratification. In his photographs of the Palast der Republik in Berlin during its demolition, the building appears to oscillate between past and future. Through touching the weathered surfaces of the the concrete Salk Institute in Lajolla or the masonry at the Insitute of Management in Ahmedebad, one can trace the changes over time.
Designer of the exhibition is David Saik.