Thursday, 18 September 2014

Bernd & Hilla Becher - Sprüth Magers

Bernd and Hilla Becher, Mine Head, Zeche Rossenray, Kamp-Lintford, 1979
Bernd and Hilla Becher is at Sprüth Magers until 4 October 2014.
I have long been a fan of the Bechers' typologies of 'Anonyme Skulpturen'. Anyone familiar with their work will know what to expect from this exhibition (the Bechers' methodology didn't change through 50 years or so of work) - a selection of formally framed, evenly lit, grey studies of industrial structures: gasometers, water towers, blast furnaces, coal bunkers and so on - sometimes presented as single photographs, sometimes in grids of 9 or 15. However, even though the general form and content of their work is completely familiar to me I am so glad that I visited this show: because these pictures are beautiful and facinating. It is easy to forget that photographic reproductions of photographs are no substitute for looking at original prints. The pictures in this show are exquisite.
Bernd & Hilla Becher, Mine Head, Siege De Folschwiller, 1987
Bernd & Hilla Becher, Blast Furnace, Rombas, Lorraine, 1984
Bernd & Hilla Becher, Blast Furnace, Boel, La Louvière, 1985

Bernd & Hilla Becher, Lime Kiln, Kaltes Tal, 1997

Bernd & Hilla Becher, Detail, Petrochemical Plant, Wesseling, 1983
Bernd & Hilla Becher, Gas Tanks, 1973-2009

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