press release

From September 29th to November 18th 2001, the Kunst-Werke Berlin e.V., Institute for Contemporary Art, presents the exhibition Arrêt sur image - Contemporary Art from France. The exhibition, organized by the Kunst-Werke in cooperation with the ADIAF, Paris, the Cultural Department of the French Embassy Berlin and the Bureau des Arts Plastiques, Cologne, shows a selection of works by French artists or by artists based in France, from French private collections.

Arrêt sur image gives an overview into the work of several generations of artists, who were all concerned with the theme of the photographic, video or technical image. For instance, Jean-Marc Bustamante, Sophie Calle, Suzanne Lafont and Jean-Luc Moulène have contributed to the renewal of the discourse in the 1980s, at a time, when the photographic image was just beginning to gain its autonomy from painting. Since the status of photography as a sign of the real caused them to redefine the relationship to an ever changing world again and again, these artists focussed on the specifics of photography, concentrating initially on the formal aspects of the medium. In the sense the photographic series of Suzanne Lafont and Jean Luc Moulène, displayed in the exhibition, relate to billboards in the public realm and the position of images in the contemporary urban landscape.

Artists of the younger generation like Pierre Faure, Valérie Jouve, Bojan Sarcevic, Bruno Serralongue and Pierre Huyghe increasingly ask questions of the representation and conditioning of the individual reality or of the reality presented in the media. Their works approach reality by fragmentation. Artists like Chantal Akerman or Anri Sala relate in their works to the genre of documentary films as well as to the history of cinema and its narrative vocabulary.

Apart from their explicit use of photography and film in relation to, i.e. the social reality, the individual biography, landscape or architecture, the works displayed share the analysis of the narrative and suggestive dimensions of the image, within which abstraction becomes a physical and psychological experience of the spectator. In this sense the works are renderings of a moment and a situation, or approach a location or personal relation, or are the reconstruction of such a relationship, which use the image itself as a place of search and memory. Hereby the language used in the images asserts itself as a medium independent from language, thus strengthening the reference to the index-filled world and its discourses.

Participating artists: Absalon, Chantal Akerman, Valérie Belin, Jean-Marc Bustamante, Sophie Calle, Pierre Faure, Pierre Huyghe, Valerie Jouve, Suzanne Lafont, Jean-Luc Moulene, Anri Sala, Bojan Sarcevic, Bruno Serralongue.

only in german

Arret sur image
Contemporary Art from France

Künstler: Absalon , Chantal Akerman, Valerie Belin, Jean-Marc Bustamante, Sophie Calle, Pierre Faure, Pierre Huyghe, Valerie Jouve, Suzanne Lafont, Jean-Luc Moulene, Anri Sala, Bojan Sarcevic, Bruno Serralongue