From a „Topographic“ to an „Environmental“ Understanding of Space—Looking into the Past and into the Presence of the New Topographics Movement
In der aktuellen Ausgabe der Online-Zeitschrift Depth of Field [vol. 7, no. 1 (Dezember 2015)] wird das im Oktober stattgefundene Symposium besprochen und zusammengefasst In the current issue of the online magazine Depth of Field [vol. 7, no. 1 (December 2015)] the symposium will be reviewed and summarized: Depth of Field
SYMPOSIUM: Freitag Friday, 30.10.2015, 9 – 18 Uhr 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Tagungsort Conference venue: Architekturpavillon der TU Braunschweig, Pockelsstraße 4, 38106 Braunschweig
In Kooperation mit der Fakultät (3) Architektur, Bauingenieurwesen und Umweltwissenschaften.
In cooperation with the Department Architecture, Civil Engineering and Environmental Sciences.
Wegbeschreibung Directions: Eingang durch das zentrale Campusgebäude Entrance through the main campus building Google Maps
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In 1975 William Jenkins presented the exhibition New Topographics – Photographs of a Man-altered Landscape in the George Eastman House, which the American curator Peter Galassi characterized as one of the key exhibitions of the 20th century. With the focus of the exhibition on the processes of change in the urban peripheries, Jenkins first of all pursued an architectural-urban interest. At the same time the works of the photographers named by him as constituting the New Topographics, namely Robert Adams, Lewis Baltz, Bernd and Hilla Becher, Joe Deal, Frank Gohlke, Nicholas Nixon, John Schott, Stephen Shore und Henry Wessel, are associated with the emergent ecological awareness of the 1970s. Important later works of the photographers, like Lewis Baltz’s San Quentin Point from 1982, John Gossage’s The Pond from 1985 (not represented in Jenkins’s show) or Robert Adam’s Turning back (2005), added however a much stronger environmental and environmentally critical touch to the proposed urban development debate which had not been a central theme in the New Topographics Exhibition.
Today the New Topographics is judged to have a strong influence on the photography of other countries and the Exhibition is often even understood in the sense of a movement. Parallel or roughly at the same time, a flourishing of photographic methods of presenting landscape and nature can also be observed which were close to the keyword “topographical” in the presumably neutral sense of landscape stocktaking. What common features, however, are there for “topographical” landscape representations in the USA, France, Germany, England, Spain, Denmark and the Netherlands and what national differences and characteristics can be detected? What was the impact of the New Topographics Exhibition as a catalyst of an immense photographic interest on the effects of the man-made destruction of the environment? How do many of the works with the subjects of wastelands, edge lands or terrain vagues relate to the New Topographics? The symposium seeks to get to the bottom of not only the history of the reception of the exhibition and the orientation of transnational topographical landscape concepts in the age of the Anthropocene, but will discuss how under the influence of the New Topographics what has been characterized as “environmental photography” since the start of this century has developed internationally.
9:00 – 9:15 Gisela Parak: Begrüßung und Einführung Welcome and Opening remarks
9:15 – 10:00 Alison Nordström (Lesley University, Cambridge, MA, USA):
Born to Run: Looking Back at the New Topographics Generation
10:00 – 10:45 Suzaan Boettger (Bergen Community College, New Jersey, USA):
Imaging Topography in/as the Anthropocene
10:45 – 11:00 Kaffeepause Coffee break
11:00 – 11:45 Matthew Shaul (University of Hertfordshire Galleries, Hatfield, UK):
A Green and Pleasant Land? The Reluctant Modernism of British Landscape Photography
11:45 – 12:30 Frits Gierstberg (Nederlands Fotomuseum, Rotterdam, NL):
False Flat. The Reception of the New Topographics in the Netherlands
12:30 – 14:00 Mittagspause Lunch
14:00 – 14:45 Jean-Louis Garnell (Fotograf photographer, Châtenay-Malabry, FR):
My experiences with the Mission photographique de la DATAR
14:45 – 15:30 Theo Baart (Fotograf photographer, Rotterdam, NL):
Werklust – Biography of a Landscape in Transition
15:30 – 16:00 Kaffeepause Coffee break
16:00 – 16:45 Jennifer Colten (Fotografin photographer, Washington University, St. Louis, MO, USA):
At the Edge of Landscape: Nature’s Resiliency at the Site of Interruption
16:45 – 17:30 Christina Capetillo (Fotografin photographer, Institute for Architecture, Urbanism and Landscape,
School of Architecture at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, DK): A Contemporary Landscape
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