The Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich recently opened an exhibition about the work of the Berlin-based architect and photographer Gerrit Engel.
Berlin – shaped by the political upheavals of the 20th century like no other city – and Manhattan, New York, the epitome of the big city, metropolis of the Modern Age. In the photographs of Gerrit Engel these two cliché-laden cities are to be seen in a new, completely unfamiliar light. He focuses on the buildings like a scientist researching exotic beings. Fascinated, yet at the same time with the distance of a scientist. With »vasculum-like dispassion«, but not without affection.
Gerrit Engels photographs are portrait studies of houses, each with their own face, that join forces to create a portrait of the entire city – history of the city based on images of its striking, more or less attractive buildings, both large and small, spectacular or merely picturesque. These works form what is, in fact, the very first typology of Manhattan’s architecture and – 20 years after the fall of the Wall – that of Berlin.
The exhibition will be open until 1 November 2009