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Museum Villa Stuck Opens Street Life & Home Stories Photographs from the Goetz Collection

Museum Villa Stuck presents Street Life & Home Stories Photographs from the Goetz Collection on view 1 June–11 September 2011.

Street Life & Home Stories presents works by 24 artists from the photographic archive of the Goetz Collection—which encompasses 1,300 photographic works by over 70 artists—introducing an extensive selection of artworks that, focusing on these two thematic ranges, reflect a concern with social and political issues. The exhibition aims to expose interactions across different periods and between various approaches, without resorting to a didactic or chronological mode. The city, the street and the domestic environment provide the main stage for these transgenerational themes.

Tobias Zielony, “Lighter” from the series “Trona – Armpit of America,” 2008. Courtesy Sammlung Goetz.

The Street as a Subject of Photography
The street has always provided a subject for photography, it becomes a multiplier of a subjective mood or disposition that perceives and records social phenomena and their historicity. In recent years, photographers have increasingly focused on the more marginal settings of urban life, the suburbs rather than the city center. Thus, it is not the representative locations, the tourist attractions that take center stage in street photography, but rather the places that reveal living conditions and thereby underscore the portrait’s message, as can be seen in the work of Francis Alÿs, Stan Douglas or Tobias Zielony.

The achievement of artistic photography is to go beyond documentary photography and to reveal the essence of urban structures, in one brief moment conveying the spirit of the time and, at the same time, a time-transcending message, as illustrated in the work of Thomas Struth or Candida Höfer. Depiction of life on the streets of a city reflects the artist’s concern with sociological connections and thus offers a look at society and its conditions. The street as a public space, accordingly, shows much more than just intimate portraits; it epitomizes the possibilities of individual development and conduct of life. Evelyn Hofer and Ed van der Elsken provide good examples.

The Domestic Environment as a Stage
The artists in the exhibition approach the subject of the home story in various ways. Artistic approaches and strategies deal with the interior and the staging of privacy in the domestic environment. Nobuyoshi Araki, Nan Goldin and Elmgreen & Dragset tend to use the domestic environment as a backdrop to an authentic personal account.

The artistic approach of Laurie Simmons, Daniela Rossell and Cindy Sherman depicts the interior as being emblematic of social and gender-specific role models. Eighty years earlier August Sander had already addressed the issue of social and gender-specific roles in his seminal portfolio Menschen des 20. Jahrhunderts (People of the Twentieth Century). Almost encyclopedic in aspiration, he created a picture library representing a cross section across all social strata of the late German Empire and the Weimar Republic.

Artists: Francis Alÿs, Nobuyoshi Araki, Diane Arbus, Stan Douglas, William Eggleston, Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset, Ed van der Elsken, Walker Evans, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Nan Goldin, Paul Graham, Candida Höfer, Evelyn Hofer, Sven Johne, Steve McQueen, Robin Rhode, Daniela Rossell, August Sander, Cindy Sherman, Laurie Simmons, Thomas Struth, Wolfgang Tillmans, Jeff Wall, Tobias Zielony

An exhibition at Museum Villa Stuck. Concept: Ingvild Goetz, Karsten Löckemann (Goetz Collection), Michael Buhrs, Verena Hein (Museum Villa Stuck); Curators: Verena Hein, Karsten Löckemann.

A catalogue has been published by Hatje Cantz in conjunction with the exhibition and is available in both German and English in the museum shop.

As part of a joint project between the Bavarian State Opera and the Goetz Collection, a selection of works by Elmgreen & Dragset will be presented on the premises of the Nationaltheater throughout the Munich Opera Festival (Opernfestspiele) and be on view during the performances.

Museum Villa Stuck
Prinzregentenstr. 60
81675 Munich – Germany

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