HAMBURG, GERMANY.- Hamburger Kunsthalle presents today The Gaze of Desire - Surrealist Photography, through May 29, 2005. As the first major art movement of the 20th century, Surrealism introduced the medium of photography into artistic practice. One of the founders of the Surrealist movement in 1924 in Paris was a photographer J. A. Boiffard and its members included photographers such as the American Man Ray and the Frenchman Eli Lotar, along with Claude Cahun and Dora Maar, whose work has recently been rediscovered. Other visual artists within the movement, for example the Belgian René Magritte or the German Hans Bellmer, also incorporated the relatively young medium into their work.
Photography made an essential contribution to the development of Surrealist aesthetics by giving pictorial form to the gaze of desire. Metamorphosis, fetishization, gender-switching, scandalization and hallucination were some of the central themes addressed by Surrealist photographers. In addition, new possibilities of using the medium were explored in Surrealist novels and journals. Following on from last years extensive shows of Surrealist art in Paris and Düsseldorf in which photography played only a marginal role this new exhibition in the Hamburg Kunsthalle, featuring loans from numerous international museums and collections, presents a survey of photography within the Surrealist movement during the period 192439.
Artists exhibiting: Jean-Eugène-Auguste Atget, Hans Bellmer, Denise Bellon, Jacques-André Boiffard, Brassaï, Josef Breitenbach, André Breton, Claude Cahun, Georges Hugnet, Valentine Hugo, Louis-Jean-Baptiste Igout, Pierre Jahan, Jacques-Henri Lartigue, Eli Lotar, Dora Maar, René Magritte, Man Ray, Marcel Mariën, Willy Maywald, E. L. T. Mesens, Lee Miller, Paul Nougé, Jean Painlevé, Gaston Paris, Roger Parry, Roger Schall, Jindřich tyrský, Raoul Ubac, Robert Valençay, and Wols. The exhibition was curated by Dr. Ivo Kranzfelder and Dr. Annabelle Görgen. The exhibition is being staged in conjunction with the 3rd Triennial of Photography Hamburg 2005 and will be accompanied by an extensive programme of events focusing on photography. The exhibition includes loans from national and international private collections in New York, France and Germany and from galleries and major museums in Germany, Britain and France such as the Centre Georges Pompidou, the Musée dArt moderne de la ville de Paris.