- The exhibition DELETE at the MKG Museum in Hamburg for the Triennial of Photography
The Triennial of Photography Hamburg 2018 began just over a month ago. The overarching theme BREAKING POINT Searching for Change subtitled unlearning x rethinking x restarting is a clear reference to the crucial moment when images dominate our communications and our world in general. The 7th Triennial has become the biggest appointment for the world of photography in Germany, decreeing Hamburg as the capital of German photography once and for all, and as the artistic director Krzysztof Candrowicz says, "we want to really initiate a change through the medium of photography - a possible rethink.”
The variety of initiatives and exhibitions to see as part of the Triennial, which runs until September, are intended to engage audiences, inspire action and invoke change. The triennial underscores the high social relevance of photographic art and, more importantly, demonstrates the power of photography, a combination that explains the event's success, according to Dr Carsten Brosda, Senator for Culture and Media of Hamburg.
The Triennial of Photography is broken down into theme areas according to computer commands. Terms like [enter], [space], [home], [shift], [control], [return], [delete], and [escape] are today widespread lexicons of our everyday lives but there is a compelling message hidden behind these computer keys that the Triennial aims to bring to the fore.
This is the backdrop for the exhibition DELETE Selection and Censorship in Photojournalism at the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg (MKG) focusing on the huge influence of the media on forming public opinion. Using historical photos and contemporary snapshots on themes such as migration, poverty, social issues and civil war, DELETE explores the reasons behind the selection of what to publish in the media.
How do publishers, editors, authors, and graphic designers influence the photographers’ work and the expressive force of their pictures? What mechanisms determine which photos are shown and which never see the light of day? What then ends up being remembered, and what is forgotten?
Guided by these questions, the MKG takes a look at four reportages from 1968 to 1983, sourced from its own archives. On view are some 60 reportage photographs, four photospreads from the magazines Stern, Playboy, Kristall and Der Bote für die evangelische Frau and four interview films which the photographers made for the exhibition. By comparing and contrasting the published photospreads with the original contact sheets as well as with the pictures selected by the photographers for the museum collection, and based on the photographers’ own accounts, viewers can discover the background behind the selection process, how journalists work, and what scope photographers are given to exercise their own creative judgement.
The exhibition DELETE Selection and Censorship in Photojournalism delves into the heart of the debate on ethics in visual journalism. A theme and thoughts that we discover are not a prerogative of modern times but were already around in the pre-digital era. The exhibition showcases about 80 works, videos and lots of contact sheets and includes historical works by Hanns-Jörg Anders, Sirah Foighel-Brutmann e Eitan Efrat, Günter Hildenhagen, Ryuichi Hirokawa and Thomas Hoepker.
DELETE. Selection and Censorship in Photojournalism
from 8 June to 25 November 2018
Images: courtesy of MKG - see captions
1) Hanns-Jörg Anders (*1942), Unrests in Northern Ireland (Londonderry), 1969, Gelatin silver print, 26,5 x 38,7 cm, © Hanns-Jörg Anders – Red. Stern
2) Hanns-Jörg Anders (*1942), from a Reportage about Unrests in Northern Ireland, 1969, Gelatin silver print, 59,3 x 40,6 cm, © Hanns-Jörg Anders – Red. Stern
3) Sirah Foighel Brutmann (*1983) & Eitan Efrat (*1983), Printed Matter, 2011, 30min, 16mm / HD video, Videostill, © Sirah Foighel Brutmann/Eitan Efrat
4) Ryūichi Hirokawa (*1943), Israeli Troops are Reaching Western Beirut, 1982, Gelatin silver print, 20,1 x 30 cm, © Ryūichi Hirokawa
5) Thomas Hoepker (*1936), Main Road in Montgomery, Alabama, 1963, Gelatin silver print, 36,7 x 48,8 cm, © Thomas Hoepker/Magnum Photos
6) Thomas Hoepker (*1936), Slums in Montgomery, Alabama, 1963, Gelatin silver print, 48,6 x 33,4 cm, © Thomas Hoepker/Magnum Photos
as part of the 7th Triennial of Photography Hamburg
Find out more: MKG https://www.mkg-hamburg.de/en/exhibitions/current/delete.html
Triennial of Photography: https://www.phototriennale.de/en/