16.09.2005 to 20.11.2005


New Ways of Seeing in Berlin. Photography of the Twenties

An exhibition of the Art Library / Museum for Photography

The exhibition in the Art Library illuminates one of the most innovative chapters in the more recent history of photography. Around one hundred photographs by well-known artists such as Max Burchartz, Florence Henri, László Moholy-Nagy und Albert Renger-Patzsch are on display. Their pictures were quickly received with great enthusiasm by the general public. In them, up-to-date modernity was combined with aesthetics which circulated under the catchphrases 'New Ways of Seeing' or 'New Sobriety'.

The new stylistic idiom - determined by surprising cut-outs, dynamic diagonal perspectives, intense focus and the stress on structures - was applied throughout the range of classical topics: architecture, portraiture, nature study and still life. Beyond that, everyday life, industry and technology moved into focus; advertising and journalism opened new productive possibilities of employment.

The exhibits are drawn from acquisitions which the Art Library made between 1929 and 1932, under Curt Glazier, director of the Art Library from 1924 to 1933. They come from two different exhibitions, notably the Werkbund 'Film and Photo' show, which was rated as the most important international summary of avant-garde film and photography of the 1920s.