Exhibitions Solo


a scratch on the surface

17. May 2022 – 25. June 2022

Bastian Schwind (AT)


Opening: Monday, 16 May 2022, 7 p.m.
Opening speech: Nicolas Oxen, Düsseldorf
Artist Talk: Thursday, 9 June, 7 p.m.
Finissage: Saturday, 25 June, 2–6 p.m.

Due to renovation work the FOTOGALERIE WIEN will be closed from July 2022. Have a nice summer!

Since 2010 the FOTOGALERIE WIEN has put on an annual solo exhibition showcasing the work of a young, upcoming artist. This series of exhibitions, SOLO, functions as a platform and springboard for artists who are at the beginning of their career but who already have an extensive body of work that we want to present to a wider public. The aim is to achieve a sustainable level of public presence for the chosen artist and includes helping to organize cooperations and touring shows. For SOLO XIII we proudly present the artist Bastian Schwind.

Just one small scratch is sometimes enough to irritate the eye and turn a surface into an image. Bastian Schwind’s works are not photographs in a conventional sense but explorations and playful engagements with the materiality of photography and its practices and processes.

It is precisely the fleeting and transformative material nature of digital photography that triggers a nostalgic longing for the auratic qualities of analogue film material. Old films, for example, are collected by photographers because of their specific qualities of colour and carefully stored in refrigerators, though they are usually never used because they are so valuable. For Killing my dead filmstock, Schwind has pierced his own carefully treasured sheet films, turning them into a photographic object which, like a totem, is meant to exorcise this fetishistic spell of nostalgia.

Not only the materiality of photography itself but also its translation through photographic processes plays an important role in the works shown. Again and again, the focus is on the transformation of the three-dimensional real world into the flat image surfaces of photography and the resulting aesthetic effects. In the eponymous work, the measuring points of the focus profile in the viewfinder of a Nikon D800 are put into the picture in a very material way – as measuring points made of stainless steel, like those used in land surveys.

In Bastian Schwind’s work, photography is also understood as something sculptural and architectural. The Wohnblock, functioning as a kind of “photographic ready-made”, shows how material, object, and image can coincide. What is on show is a photograph of a prefabricated concrete tower block in Vienna, that was exposed on baryta paper, mounted on an aluminium plate and then cast into a concrete frame. (Nicolas Oxen)

Petra Noll-Hammerstiel, for the collective