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Hans Hansen . Still Life


A 1988 VW Golf meticulously dismantled into nearly 7,000 individual pieces, artistically arranged glass blocks, the silhouette of a flower, and a photograph of a Japanese wooden mask: Hans Hansen’s way of looking at things is radically simplified, linear, yet energized. He approaches industrially produced products, a workman’s tools, and natural specimens with the same precision and care. Technical accuracy and a graphic minimalism bring the objects to life visually. Since the 1960s, Hans Hansen has defined our perception of the everyday world of things more than almost any other photographer. A trained lithographer and graphic designer who taught himself photography, Hansen was the first to bring together advertising photography with the world of art and design. In doing so, he set new aesthetic standards in both fine art and commercial photography.

Hans Hansen will speak with the cultural journalist Marcus Jauer about approaching photography from a design perspective and his constant search for new images. Hansen is not merely interested in depicting objects, but also in the means by which they are represented. His working method takes objects and disassembles them, removes them from their everyday context, isolates them, places them in a new light, backlights them, makes them float, questions their attributes, dissects them, composes them, and combines them in complementary ways. The exhibition Hans Hansen . Still Life at C/O Berlin is accompanied by a catalog published by Spector Books in Leipzig, featuring essays by Hartmut Böhme, Hannes Böhringer, Falk Haberkorn, Axel Kufus, Juhani Pallasmaa, and Anna Voswinckel. The publication encompasses Hansen’s photographic oeuvre, which spans more than sixty years, and reveals the significance of his unmistakable visual language.

Hans Hansen was born in Bielefeld in 1940 and studied commercial graphic design at the Düsseldorf Art Academy after training as a lithographer. He is a self-taught photographer. Since the early 1960s, he has worked as an independent photographer in Hamburg for renowned companies such as American Express, Audi, Bulthaup, Daimler Benz, Dibbern, Erco, Kodak, Lufthansa, Siemens, Vitra, and VW. His images also appear in well-known national and international journals, periodicals, and magazines such as GEO magazine, Greenpeace Magazin, Mare, Stern, Süddeutsche Zeitung magazine and ZEITmagazin, among others.

Marcus Jauer was born in Borna in 1974 and worked as a reporter for the Süddeutsche Zeitung and as a features editor on the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. He now works as a freelance journalist and author. His writing has received multiple awards. He lives in Berlin with his wife and five children.

The conversation will take place in German and will be followed by the book launch and signing with Hans Hansen.

Talk Hans Hansen . Still Life
Participants Hans Hansen, Markus Jauer
Introduction Felix Hoffmann, Hauptkurator / Chief Curator C/O Berlin Foundation
Date 14.07.2017 . 18:00 Uhr / 06:00 pm
Admission 10 Euro . reduced 6 Euro
Location C/O Berlin . Amerika Haus . Hardenbergstraße 22–24 . 10623 Berlin