Thomas Kellner : Black & White
January 16 - March 19, 2016
infocus Galerie, Burkhard Arnold, Cologne, Germany
“Who would have thought that so much wonder could still be created with straight photographs in a time given to digital manipulation?” Alan G. Artner, Chicago Tribune
Starting in January 2016, German and international galleries will be presenting Thomas Kellner’s new exhibition “Black & White”. Silver gelatin tableaux made by Kellner between 1997 and 2005 will be on display. In this exhibition, Kellner recalls his beginnings as an artist and his roots in black-and-white photography using the analog gelatin silver process.
Black-and-white photography first became widespread in 1871 and developed into the first large-scale visual medium in cultural history. It was the dominant form of photography for almost 60 years before color photography was introduced. Those who have followed Kellner’s photography over the years know that most of his works have been published and exhibited in color. However, there was a time when Kellner worked in black and white.
In a time when many artists are returning to black-and-white photography, Thomas Kellner looks back on this period of his life. Even though most of his black-and-white works were never published, they do reflect his early career when he worked mostly in silver gelatin and experimented with cycles of various photographic images in the darkroom. Kellner ended up developing his unique visual language of multiple perspectives and the deconstructive approach whereby the composite image is either a multiple exposure on a negative or a sequence mounted on a contact sheet of 35-mm roll of film.
Starting with his first sketches of the Eiffel Tower as a homage to Robert Delaunay and Orphism (the French offshoot of cubism) in Paris in 1997, Kellner totally turned his attention from landscape to architecture and the growing complexity of his compositions. He creates ageless classic images in his newly invented visual language based on Cubism. In Kellner’s early black-and-white images, the observer can see how he focuses on the structure itself. The balance between the object and its visual form are at the center of his creations.
Kellner’s original concept was to create images with 36 exposures equaling one length of film. Later, he moved on to using two or more rolls. The exhibition will show iconic black-and-white images from San Francisco, New York City and Chicago for the first time. It also will have some larger scale works on show- for example, an impressive image of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao.
On exhibit will also be a selection of 40 of Kellner’s best black-and-white images to start on January 14, 2016 in Cologne and then Siegen. The presentation will be accompanied by a catalogue, with an essay by Harris Fogel and published by Seltmann+söhne, Lüdenscheid and Berlin. The “Black & White” project is being financed by crowdfounding on kickstarter.com. The pitch includes a video with Thomas Kellner, (naturally, in black and white) worth seeing.
in focus Galerie – B. Arnold
16.01. – 19.03.2016
Opening on Saturday, January 16, 2016, 7 – 9 pm.
Tel.:+49 221 1 300341
up to February 13, every Tuesday till Friday 4 – 7 pm, Saturday 11 am – 6 pm.
up to March 19 only after appointment
thank you to Burkharrd and Anja for the wonderful opening!