Folkwang Photo Talk mit Sabine Kriebel


We are looking forward to welcome Dr. Sabine Kriebel from University College Cork for our next Folkwang Photo Talk. Dr. Kriebel will speak about her current project, a reassessment of the Neue Sachlichkeit/New Objectivity aesthetics and on Aenne Biermann’s stance to photography in particular. The title of her talk is brief and sachlich:

Aenne Biermann’s Sachlichkeit

Eggs. Hands. Cacti. Cucumber. Agate. Aenne Biermann’s photography is associated with objects--objects isolated and framed by the camera lens, offset from the surrounding world, and given significance by virtue of the photographic frame. Characterized by critics as a classic exemplar of the Neue Sachlichkeit, or Neues Sehen (the terms are often curiously intertwined), these photographs seem to represent a return to the things themselves, in all of their concrete, phenomenal presence. In the 1920s, in the wake of significant social and economic destabilization, the return to the incontrovertible thing was a bid for stability, clarity, and ontological knowing. This is.

But why these objects, and not others? As writers ranging from Edmund Husserl, Sigmund Freud, Sara Ahmed, and Kaja Silverman have observed, choosing to orient ourselves around this object and not that one involves a set of signifying alignments or kinships. Kinships indicate attachment, not detachment, and here the appellation »Sachlichkeit« begins to unravel. This paper will meddle with Biermann’s photographic »objectivity« in order to unpack the human-object relationships she instantiates in her photographs.
The talk will take place on July 10, 2024 at 6pm at Folkwang University’s Quartier Nord (room 2.13) and also online. Please email us for the Zoom link!