March 7, 2002 - Galleri Nicolai Wallner - Joachim Koester at Galleri Nicolai Wallner
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March 7, 2002

Joachim Koester at Galleri Nicolai Wallner

Joachim Koester
Bialowieza Forest and Anna Karina

March 2 – April 20, 2002 

Galleri Nicolai Wallner
Njalsgade 21, Building 15
DK 2300 Copenhagen, Denmark

www.nicolaiwallner.com

Joachim Koester, Anna Karina #1 (2001), C-print, Fuji Crystal Archive, Mounted and framed, 87,5×109,7 cm (paper) 62,0×85,7 cm (image), Edition of 5+2AP.

To preview the show online please go to:
www.nicolaiwallner.com/exhibitions/Koester2002/Koester2002. html

Press Release

It is a great pleasure to present an exhibition with new works by Joachim Koester.

In the Main Gallery we show The project Bialowieza Forest. The Bilaowieza Forest dates back to 8000 BC. It was never cut or planted by human hands and it’s the only remaining example of the original lowland forest, which once covered much of Europe. Situated in east Poland on the border of Belorussia it contains a great diversity of plants, animals and insects, as well as thousands of species of fungi and vascular plants, many of these extinct elsewhere. A fact that makes the forest an important site for research today, providing biologists with a unique primeval model to study and compare natural processes.

The Bialowieza Forest has been famous for centuries as the home of the European Bison, and through the years it has been described in literature and travel accounts as a: Sylvan arcadia, an asylum, a succor, a pristine Eden, a sacred groove and a dark and alien impenetrable wilderness. Poles, Lithuanians, Germans and Russians have mapped the forest as a homeland, a setting for national identity, utilizing its distinctiveness to illuminate national character.

The Polish poet Adam Mickiewiez imagined the forest as a fortified shelter, a place of origin and resurrection for the Polish-Lithuanian nation – the Reichsmarschall ermann Göring saw the German occupation of the area in 1939 as an opportunity to welcome back what he believed was a pure ‘Teutonic Ur-wald’, long vanished from German soil. A belief that had fatal consequences for the local population.

Landscapes are culture before they are nature, constructs of the imagination projected onto a specific place. The 9 photographs from Bialowieza Forest depict a location that through history has been greatly infused with myths and metaphors.

Like his previous works from Chrstiania and the Arctic, this work can be seen as a continuation of Joachim Koester’s practice in which an imaginary site is paradoxically investigated through its material reality.

In the project space we show the work Anna Karina. Anna Karina became famous as an actress in 1961 playing the protagonist in the film A Woman is a Woman. During the next six years she stared in numerous films by Jean-Luc Godard, Jacques Rivette and Visconti. Joachim Koester’s 4 photographs, shot within a second, depict Anna Karina standing in a park. Like four frames in a film, the images create a sense of movement – of Anna Karina moving her head slightly downwards to the left. Besides from being a homage to Anna Karina, the photographs evoke her position as an icon of the French New Wave.

During the last years Joachim Koester has been exhibiting at Documenta X, Kassel, Centre National de la Photographie, Paris, Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol, Kunstwerke, Berlin, PS 1 Centre of Contemporary Art, New York, Astrup Fearnley Museum, Oslo, MCA, Chicago, Malmo Konst Museum, Malmo, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Kunsthalle Wien, Wien, Van AbbeMuseum, Eindhoven, Museum Fridericianum, Kassel, Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne, Museée d’art moderne de la Ville de Paris, Paris, Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, Johannesburg Biennale, Johannesburg, Louisiana Humlebaek, Kwangju Bienale, South Korea. February 27 2002 Joachim Koester will open a solo exhibition at Kunsthalle Nurnberg, Germany.

If you have any questions please take contact and we will be very pleased to assist you.

We welcome you in the gallery.

Kind regards

Galleri Nicolai Wallner

For more information go to: www.nicolaiwallner.com/exhibitions/Koester2002/Koester2002. html

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