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Julian Charrière in Model Natures in Contemporary Photography

Group exhibition curated by Dr. Marie Christine Jádi with Oliver Boberg, Sonja Braas, Julian Charrière, Shirley Wegner, Thomas Wrede

What is real and what is wrong? What truth do we think we recognize? Or is everything just a delusion? These questions, which have accompanied photography from its beginnings and are more pronounced than ever in today's media culture, are the focus of this exhibition.

The focus is on the topic »nature« and its imitation. Replicating a natural form harbors other difficulties than replicating a man-made, already artificial form. As true masters of illusion, the artists create miniatures of places of fantasy, sea, snow and mountain landscapes, urban spaces or the forces of nature. The model is increasingly disappearing in the medium of photography and it is not uncommon for the impression of a deceptively real image of nature to be created.

Julian Charrière works very similarly, transforming the mound of earth into monumental mountain panoramas and playing with the expectation of alpine places. The geodata of its panorama series, which gives its title, however, refers to an ordinary Berlin construction site differently than expected.

All five artists create the templates for their pictures by hand and do not use digital post-processing. They thus move in the media threshold area between sculpture, model making and photography, the latter gaining importance as a final form of presentation, since the built models are often destroyed afterwards. Exploring the limits of reality and artificiality, of truth and fraud, questioning our perception and playing with our viewing habits are at the center of the artistic approach.

On the one hand, it is the lust for appearances that keeps us under our spell and challenges our active seeing: We start to search the images for the mistakes, the moment when the supposed reality tilts into the artificial and we are literally disappointed, on the other hand, the creative potential is impressive: the artists don't just create an image of nature, they become the creator themselves. Her models create a parallel world in which time seems to have stood still, which we can explore, question or simply marvel at. In this sense, the pictures not only sensitize us to a more critical look at what we see, but they also invite us to immerse themselves in them and let themselves be taken in by their riddles. 

In cooperation with the Kallmann Museum Ismaning, the Ludwig Galerie Saarlouis and the Stadtgalerie Kiel. A catalog for the exhibition has been published by Michael Imhof Verlag.

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