Triennial of Photography Hamburg BREAKING POINT. June – September 2018


on politics, money and power

Curated by Petra Roettig & Stephanie Bunk

This exhibition will be shown at the Hamburger Kunsthalle from 8 June to 23 September 2018.

Thomas Ruff (*1958) Nacht 2 II, 1992 C-Print, 190 x 190 cm Hamburger Kunsthalle © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018
Thomas Ruff (*1958) Nacht 2 II, 1992 C-Print, 190 x 190 cm Hamburger Kunsthalle © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018

The exhibition [CONTROL] NO CONTROLpresents approximately 80 contemporary works of art taken from the collection of the Hamburger Kunsthalle or on loan from private collections and other museums. Viewed side by side and in their confrontational approach, the selected works expose and examine how power is effectively exerted through control. They show artistic strategies that offer resistance to surveillance and question the mechanisms of social control. 
For her work La FilatureSophie Calle commissioned a private detective in 1981 to shadow and observe her. In Behold these Glorious Times(2017) Trevor Paglen focused on machine vision, artificial intelligence (AI) and the changing status of pictures. What happens when pictures are no longer read by people but by computers? Pictures of people are increasingly being made without their knowledge, as Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarindemonstrate in Spirit is a Bone (2016) with their atlas of facial images, a project they developed by employing a 3D scanner based on security technology. Using a weapons-grade thermal camera, Richard Mosse has documented the journeys of refugees to Europe. Incoming (2017) is a reflection on national control systems, human suffering and technologies that can fundamentally change the conditions of visibility when turned against themselves. The five pictures in the series Presidencyby Thomas Demand were commissioned by The New York Times Magazineon the occasion of the 2008 presidential election in the USA. They document how power is staged, and, at the same time, they demonstrate that we are willingly deceived by a fake when we see the image.

Participating artists:  Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin, Sophie Calle, Edmund Clark & Crofton Black, Thomas Demand, Bogomir Ecker, Harun Farocki, Jenny Holzer, Sven Johne, Annette Kelm, Mårten Lange, Richard Mosse, Trevor Paglen, Peter Piller, Barbara Probst, Thomas Ruff.