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Beauty beyond the Visible

01.10.2010 to 09.01.2011

Museum für Fotografie
Museum für Fotografie

Microphotography oscillates between the realms of science and art more than any other genre in photography. Inspired by the biologist Ernst Haeckel and his seminal work 'Kunstformen der Natur', the microscopic image was catapulted, especially in the German-speaking world, into being the most important medium for a kind of aesthetic that was both driven by natural science and powerfully brought into focus nature's role as a model for art.

At the centre of this exhibition are a series of works that develop a new, experimental visual aesthetic from the microcosmic universe of forms and shapes. Visitors' attention is also turned to photographs that were taken for purely scientific purposes and yet have a breath-taking artistic quality to them. Such photographs were created long before avant-garde photography came to recognize the potential for experimentation in microphotography. The spectrum of this exhibition spans from one of the very earliest microphotographic works ever made (Andreas Ritter von Ettingshausen's daguerreotype from 1840, depicting the cross-section of the stem of a clematis), to Robert Koch's images of bacteria, Johann Diedrich Möller's diatom specimens, as well as studies by Alfred Ehrhardt and Carl Strüwe, and even includes the scanning electron images taken by Claudia Fährenkemper, one-time student of Bernd Becher, and atomic force microscopic images taken by Hans-Ulrich Danzebrink.

In cooperation with the Alfred Ehrhardt Foundation.
Held as part of the Berlin contribution to the European Month of Photography.