»The Photographic Capriccio«
Sheets from 1998 to 2008
Opening: Friday, July 8, 2016, 19-21h (Facebook Event)
Exhibition: July 9 – September 16, 2016
Opening hours: open on the Saturday following the opening (July 9), 12-15h;
afterwards: Tue-Fri 14-19h, and by appointment
From 09 July to 16 September, 2016 Galerie Hilaneh von Kories will present the seemingly nostalgic and highly irritating works by the artist Thomas Bak. His figures, objects, landscapes and rooms confront viewers with a manneristic style, eccentric as well as enigmatic-erotic imagery. Bak has become a classic in artistic photography, which invites to the surrealistic play between authenticity and autonomy clad in seemingly historic daguerreotypes. He calls his procedure „the reanimation of atavistic and seemingly lost pictures“. The results of these totem-creating processes are melancholic, poetic metaphors „alchemystic“ allegories seen from the perspective of our time. Bak’s iconography is full of symbols, fetishes and citations of art history, literature and hermeticism.
Using the title of the exhibition „The Photographic Capriccio“ the photographer refers to the art form of the Capriccio, which came into being between the 16th to the late 18th century as a struggle for artistic freedom and which is in art theory considered a complex forerunner of modern art: Capriccio painters and graphic designers defied the academic norms of their time. Beyond the limits of reality they presented monstrous products of the darkest depths of the human soul and employed diverse objects for the pictures. Many artists also used this newly found sense of freedom for critical and political statements. For instance one of Bak’s photographic series is called „Arche=Nada“, a bizarre interpretation of the comforting concept of Noah’s Ark.
The photographer, who is also writer, musician and artist first sketsches his pictures and later choreographs them in an extravagant way.
Thomas Bak was born in Szczecin, Poland. He attended Bremen University for the Arts of Book and Graphic Design and Photography and received his degree from Professor Fritz Haase. In 2004 Bak was awarded Germany’s most renowned prizes for talented young photographers: The BFF and Reinhard-Wolff-Preis. His works have been presented around the globe and are part of state-run collections.
Bak‘s works for the former Bauhaus singer Peter Murphy as well as Dalis Car established his renown worldwide. After longer stays in Los Angeles and Paris he has been living in Spain and Germany since 2015, where he is more and more engaged in his own publishing house, book art and photographic projects.