Fondation Cartier, Paris


plan route show map

artist / participant

press release

The Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain is pleased to present the first major solo exhibition in France of influential German photographer Juergen Teller. For his exhibition at the Fondation Cartier, the artist has chosen to present a major new body of work, the Nürnberg series. An investigation of Germany’s recent past as well as a celebration of the importance of family, the Nürnberg series will serve as the guiding thread of a retrospective that will also include the major images from the artist’s career, as well as a new series of photographs realized in Japan. The exhibition at the Fondation Cartier will also provide a special focus on the artist’s work as it appears in publications, exploring the relationships created by the sequencing of images in printed form.

Brought up in the small town of Bubenreuth in the woods surrounding Nurenberg, Juergen Teller (born in 1966) came upon photography by accident. Following in the footsteps of his father, he first worked as an apprentice making bows for violins. When he developed a debilitating allergy to the wood with which he worked, the doctor advised rest and a change of air. He thus left for a trip to Italy with his cousin Helmut, who gave him the opportunity to try his hand at making pictures. Upon his return home, he decided to make photography his vocation and subsequently enrolled in the Bayerische Staatslehranstalt für Photographie in Munich, where he was provided a solid education in the basics of photographic technique.

After graduation, he decided to move to London in 1986 where he rapidly became an important name in photography working for British fashion magazines. His innovative editorials shifted away from the artifice and refinement of conventional fashion photography towards a highly personal form of romantic, fantastical realism. Capturing his subjects at seemingly unrehearsed moments, Juergen Teller reveals them in all of their imperfection and vulnerability.

Exposing the scars and blemishes of his models, Juergen Teller’s photographs question conventional notions of beauty. Breaking down the traditional relationship between the photographer and his subject, Teller works collaboratively with his models to reveal their most intimate selves. Immediate yet highlytuned, Juergen Teller’s images leave us with a sense that we are looking at fragments of real lives lived. Juergen Teller’s exhibition at the Fondation Cartier will feature a major new body of work, entitled Nürnberg. Returning to this familiar city close to his childhood home, the artist photographed—over a period of four seasons—the Zeppelintribune parade grounds, formerly the site of Nazi propaganda rallies and part of a larger complex of monuments designed by Albert Speer for the National Socialist Party. Photographing the weeds and flowers that struggle through the huge regular blocks of stone and monumental steps of these grounds, Teller records the advancing decay of the monument which, unlike JuergenTeller


only in german

Jürgen Teller: Do you know what I mean