Alternative Realities (facts), Pingyao International Photography Festival, Pingyao, Peoples Republic of China

Alternative Realities (facts)
September 19-September 25, 2017
Pingyao International Photography Festival, Pingyao, Peoples Republic of China

exhibiting artists: Andres Wertheim, Bethany de Forest, Ludmila Steckelberg de Santana, Ploutarkos Haloftis, Bill Armstrong, Kathryn Dunlevie, Max de Esteban.

Alternative Realities (facts)

7 artists of 6 countries use their photographs to depict reality by using irritation, ambiguity, transformation and collage.

The work of spanish artist Max de Esteban visualizes his own statement about the conditions between nature and digitalization in the age of abstraction. We have reached a crossroads where life circumstances are imaged/depicted by digital approaches that we have developed, but also materialized in a digital way. This paradox, caused by digitalization, leads to the alienation of humanity in our today’s society.
Bethany de Forest began to build and afterwards to photograph dioramas during her education at the art school. It creates the illusion that the photographed place is life-size to which one could travel.
Andrés Wertheim’s works explore the different levels of visible reality. In his documentary, he records what is in front of our eyes, but knowing that the notion of truthfulness in photography entails doubts: is the camera never lying or is it just a device that captures the existing?
Kathryn Dunlevie's current project is a homage to the rich intersection of the overlapping cultures of New Orleans and the still perceptible aura of its stormy history. The interweaving of centuries-old history can be found in gardens, buildings and entire districts.
The American Bill Armstrong creates new dreamlike realities by integrating colors in famous photographs from the early history of photography.
Ludmila Steckelberg de Santana also uses old photographs for her work. Through embroidering, she transforms her works with color in textile interventions and puts her into a romantic relationship between a foreign past and her own past.
The art of using old materials to create something new is also to be found at Plotarchos Haloftis. He uses old letters, broken dolls, and torn posters as foundation for his work. Destroyed by nature and brought to a new place they get a second life.


Thank you to my wife Helga for always supporting my curatorial ideas, thank you to the Pingyao Festival for showing this exhibition in China, and special thank you to my exhibiting friends in this show.