Photography Oxford Festival Oxford Gallery


O3 Gallery Oxford

Synopsis

Opening times: Tue-Fri 12-5pm; Sat & Sun 11am -4pm;
Closed Monday


‘Restwert’ brings together work from two contemporary German photographers, Dietmar Eckell and Matthias Heiderich. The exhibition includes a selection of pieces from Eckell’s long-running project ‘Restwert’ which examines the residue of human occupation in and inscription onto the landscape. Eckell’s forlorn aircraft and abandoned monuments present the diminishing traces of social and historical events, of political experiences and of innumerable personal narratives; his landscapes evoke the relentless passage of time and seem proof of the inevitable advance of social entropy.

Matthias Heiderich’s architectural photographs are characterised by an interest in geometric form and hyper-saturated colour; the physical concreteness of his subjects is translated (through the lens) into vibrant abstractions. Needless to say that this euphoric geometry finds its antecedent in the immaculate forms of modernist visual language. Parallels can be drawn with Karl-Hugo Schmölz’s images of 1950s Cologne though in Heiderich’s case, not burdened by that unspoken but implicit post-trauma of reconstruction.

With this in mind, the concrete, architectural subjects which Heiderich photographs become ever more insubstantial edifices; these are structures as image. Depth as surface, texture as pattern. One could almost imagine a hyper-image of this kind might previously have adorned one of Dietmar Eckell’s now stripped bill boards. One function of this foregrounding of the image is of course to destabilise the relationship (or assumed equivalence) between the photograph and ‘the thing itself’. At the heart of this iconoclastic admission is the recognition of photography’s residual relationship to the photographed.

Matthias Heiderich is a self-taught German photographer based in Berlin. Since 2010 he has exhibited in the United States and across Europe including solo shows at Audi Art Gallery in St. Petersburg, Carte Blanche in San Francisco and Spot Galerie in Berlin. Heiderich has contributed to Danielle Krysa’s Creative Block, Echoes of the Future (Gestalten Verlag) and Zitty Berlin Buch, and been featured in Vogue and L’Officiel amongst others. Heiderich’s work featured in Restwert was shot between 2012 and 2014 from the series, Spektrum Eins + Zwei (Berlin 2012), West / Ost (Berlin 2013), and Reflexiones / Reflexionen (Spain, Germany, The Netherlands, 2013 – 2014).

Dietmar Eckell is a German photographer and adventurer whose work explores the ‘Restwert’ (residual value) of abandoned objects. The aesthetics of decay, the stories behind the write-offs and the memories they evoke make these objects worth documenting. Dietmar Eckell’s photographs attempts to underline the temporality of man made objects, human endeavours and perception by capturing them in nature’s endlessly regenerative growth. The series ‘Happy End’ shows aircraft which occupy remote crash-sites and has recently been published in book-form.

Read the press release here

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O3 Gallery Oxford Castle Oxford OX1 1AY
01865 246131
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Open: Tues-Fri 12-5pm, Sat & Sun 11am-4pm, Closed Mondays.
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