Our friends from Gallery Wagner + Partner in Berlin are now showing 'Belvédère - Weiß war der Schnee' (White Was the Snow) (13 Sept. – 19 Oct., 2019), a project by Thomas Wrede, photographed around Belvédère, a town at the edge of the Rhône glacier. The photo artist spent the last two years investigating issues related to the glacier and its transformation through climate change. For over 150 years, tourists have visited the glacier and its cave however; global warming is also endangering this natural spectacle. Nonetheless, by using fleece coverings, the phenomenon of glacial melt can be reduced. The gallery is pleased to premiere Wrede's new series with this solo exhibition.
Due to weathering as well as constant glacial drift, the fleece coverings age and have to be replaced regularly. Artistically, Thomas Wrede explored this fascinating interweaving of the natural landscape with human intervention. The results are beguilingly aesthetic images, which at the same time are documentation of an irretrievable process. On display at the exhibition are both interior and exterior images of the glacial cave.
Connoisseurs of Thomas Wrede’s oeuvre – think of the significant survey exhibition in the Von der Heydt Kunsthalle – will remember his Samsø series from the early 90s, on display in the back section of the gallery. For Samsø, the artist addressed a comparable issue with the same sensitivity – the use of plastic wrap to enable an early potato harvest on the Danish holiday island. The plastic wrap became plastic garbage, which also considerably altered the perception of the landscape.
The impressive black and white silver gelatin prints highlight that Wrede had already begun investigating such issues back then, which he has developed further and in color for this new exhibition, Belvédère. In the context of an increasingly broader discussion on environmental degradation and climate change, Thomas Wrede's photographic work is a call to action that encourages awareness and dialogue regarding our changing landscape.
Thomas Wrede (b. 1963 in Iserlohn) lives and works in Münster. Thomas Wrede's various exhibited serial works often deal with the concept of nature and its visualization. His series simultaneously trigger a sense of familiarity and unfamiliarity. Wrede's choices of familiar scenes often induce a sense of nostalgia. However with the manipulation of the compositions and lighting effects of his photos, a feeling of uneasiness is inevitably evoked. He is Professor of Photography and Media Art at the College of Fine Arts Essen. Wrede has exhibited in Germany and abroad since the early 90s, and his works are held in numerous international collections.
WAGNER + PARTNER Koppenplatz 5 - 6, 10115 Berlin