Following the investigation of photographed sexuality and desire in Darkside I, Fotomuseum Winterthur focuses now on the other extreme of the bodily spectrum, charting the path from the body as a veritable ‘picture of health’ to the body injured, disfigured or mutilated, in decline and decay. This raises questions: Why is there an intimate affinity between photography and death? Why does violence attract images? The visual world of western culture is full of images of violence – both random outbursts of violence and military violence, regulative state violence. In a strange reversal, societies have shut away images of life-affirming, life-giving sexuality, banishing them to the fringes of obscurity, whereas images of dark and excessive violence have been brought into the light. The reasons for this are many and complex: These images have a consoling aspect, at the same time they are fascinating and function as memorials, or as enlightening manifestos. The exhibition will include works by many photographers and artists, including: Antoine d'Agata, Christian Boltanski, Sophie Calle, Hans Danuser, Maria Friberg, Nan Goldin, F. Holland Day, Peter Hujar, Sally Mann, Enrique Metinides, Miyako Ishiuchi, Shirin Neshat, Gilles Peress, Walid Raad, Sophie Ristelhueber, Andres Serrano, Fazal Sheikh, Cindy Sherman, W. Eugene Smith, Weegee. Francesca Woodman etc.
Curator: Urs Stahel, Director Fotomuseum Winterthur
The exhibition catalogue is published by Steidl Verlag
Main sponsor: George Foundation
For their kind support, we wish to thank: Swiss Federal Office of Culture, Volkart Stiftung, Ars Rhenia, Stiftung zur überregionalen Förderung von Kunst und Kultur, Hans-Eggenberger-Stiftung, Zürich, Ringier AG, Sony Switzerland and French Embassy, Bern.