free entrance on friday, 3 €/ 2 € for students
from December 6. 2008 to March 8. 2009 at Kunsthaus Dresden
Lisl Ponger: Lasst tausend Blumen blühen is the first extensive solo exhibition in Germany showing work by this Austrian artist. The exhibition at Kunsthaus Dresden will present a representative selection of Lisl Ponger’s staged photography and installations, revolving around the definitional power of images, traces of the colonial period, and representations of the foreign, symptomatic in her work. The visual traditions of the European still life that flow into her photographic stagings, self-portraiture, and the formalized photography of modernism develop with their powerful visual charm a surprising political urgency: for example, the painterly still life of artificial flowers and knickknacks in Lasst tausend Blumen blühen, which gives the show its title, recalls memories of Mao’s famous speech at the end of the 1950s. Quoted in the work is the history of silk flower production in Sebnitz as well as the production of artificial flowers in the reeducation camps of the People’s Republic of China, and this becomes legible according to the classical manner of the still life.
The exhibition offers a path along different historical and current representations of the foreign, thereby exposing strategies of cultural definition. Which images would someone like Emil Nolde create today, and how to translate the orientalist seduction to the present? Lisl Ponger has developed from these self-posed questions a series of pictures that sensitizes our awareness of a multiplicity of lines connecting the visual and social constitution of our globalized present to the European history of colonialism.
The exhibition is accompanied by the catalog Lisl Ponger: Foto- und Filmarbeiten with articles by Martin Hochleitner, Christiane Mennicke, Shaheen Merali, and Bert Rebhandl, published by Wieser-Verlag in collaboration with Landesgalerie Linz.