Fotografiska, the internationally renowned destination for photography based in Stockholm, announced the inaugural exhibition schedule for Fotografiska New York, their newest global outpost, to open in the Winter of 2019. Originally scheduled to open this Fall, the process of preserving the building and its original details has been both a restoration project and a complete reimagine of this historic property for new arts, entertainment, dining, and events.
The first photographers to exhibit at the historic 281 Park Avenue South landmark will be Ellen von Unwerth, Tawny Chatmon, Helene Schmitz, Adi Nes and Anastasia Taylor-Lind.
“Fotografiska is unlike any ordinary museum and we’re excited to bring our vision to New York,” says Fotografiska Co-Founder Jan Broman, “It has always been a dream to open in this city, and we’re thrilled to present this roster of incredibly talented photographers as the inaugural exhibitions in our new home.”
“Our first exhibitions will be referenced for years to come, and we want to start with a strong point of view,” says Amanda Hajjar, Director of Exhibitions for Fotografiska New York, “We want to challenge both our guests’ perspectives and the traditional ideas of what can and should be shown within a museum-like setting.”
Renowned German Photographer and Fotografiska alum Ellen von Unwerth will present new works, significantly expanding her exhibition Devotion! 30 Year of Photographing Women, a collection of photographs previously shown at Fotografiska Stockholm, now fantastically augmented for its NYC premiere. Devotion! will explore her provocative, yet playful photography though the lens of seven emotional expressions: Play, Gender, Drama, Love, Power, Passion and Lust. Each image reflects the lively, energetic, sensual style ~ with a slight humorous touch ~ characteristic of von Unwerth. For the artist, it’s never about objectifying, rather, playing with archetypes and stereotypes, high and low, stirring emotions and creating commotion.
Tawny Chatmon is a self-taught artist working in the field of photography for the past 16 years. She considers her photographs a first layer of communication, which are then further articulated and united with other photographic and artistic mediums ~ paint, digital collage, illustration and gold leaf. Inspiration for her work is derived from her children, and the desire to contribute something important to a world in which she wants her children to thrive. This exhibition, organized in collaboration with Galerie Myrtis, will include works from the series The Awakening, Byzantine Contempo, and from the recently completed series called The Redemption.
A major concern in Helene Schmitz‘s work is the complicated and sometimes violent relationship between humans and nature. In several photographic projects she explores the power balance between man and the forces of Nature, and when it goes off kilter. Her exhibition at Fotografiska New York will be a selection of work from her series Thinking Like a Mountain (2017) and Kudzu Project (2013). Earlier projects have focused on the violent and sometimes fragile connection between nature and human beings, where humanity is losing its grip and spiraling out of control. Kudzu Project shows the eponymous plant (Pueraria lobar), a climbing vine, which was transported from its native Japan to the United States, and turned out to be an invasive species with dire ecological and economic consequences for both nature and the people of the U.S. South. Thinking Like a Mountain sheds light on the relationship between the ownership and exploitation of natural resources in the Nordic region. Helene Schmitz,
Adi Nes stands out as one of the most important and leading photographers in Israel. For more than 20 years, his work has been groundbreaking for an entire generation of artists while presenting the multi-layer complexities of Israeli identity. Nes creates meticulously crafted, staged images that are both autobiographical and attest to living in a country in conflict. Central themes in Adits Nes’ photographs deal with the issues of Israeli identity and masculinity. His work explores social and political questions revolving around gender, the center vs. the periphery, Eastern vs. Western cultures, ethnic, Judaism, local myths, militarism, humanism, and social Justice. Nes’ multi-layer photographs draw inspiration from his personal biography, and also from the collective Israeli memory and universal art history.
Anastasia Taylor-Lind is an English/Swedish photojournalist who has spent more than a decade documenting issues relating to women, violence and war. Fotografiska New York and TIME, have commissioned Taylor-Lind to explore the complicated web of child care which elucidates some of American society’s biggest problems ~ the oft-neglected rights of immigrant workers, the uneven division of labor between men and women, and the unequal access to quality child care. Through intimate medium-format reportage, the exhibit documents the lives of women in New York City with interconnected and interdependent child care relationships; mothers, grandmothers, nannies, babysitters, night-nurses and daycare workers.
A retrospective exhibition showcasing the work of Lars Tunbjörk (1956-2015), one of Sweden’s most internationally acclaimed photographers, will take place in the inaugural exhibition.
Organized by Lars Tunbjörk’s wife and filmmaker Maud Nycander, and curator and photographer Hasse Persson, the exhibition gathers a wide selection of Tunbjörk’s entire body of work. With equal parts humor, warmth and darkness, and a pinch of exasperation, Tunbjörk captured scenes which cause the viewer to pause, think and, in some strange way, feel a sense of recognition.
Following his sudden passing in 2015, TIME’s Deputy Director of Photography Paul Moakley aptly wrote in his obituary, “Lars made you feel like you weren’t alone and that someone else understood the great abyss that stands before us.”
Fotografiska New York is located in the Flatiron District in a six-floor, 45,000 square foot building. The new, multi-concept venue will feature three floors of galleries, an esteemed hospitality partner, a highly curated retail offering, and a versatile event space. The building, located at 281 Park Avenue South was constructed in the 1890s, and is also know as the Church Missions House, a historic building and registered landmark in an area once known as Charity Row.
The ground-level retail space will have an extensive selection of photography books and posters; the second floor will be home to a restaurant partner that will be announced in the coming months; floors three through five ~ the exhibition space ~ will showcase local and international photographers, rotating the work throughout the year.
Each floor will offer a completely unique opportunity for discovery, and creating these spaces has required the utmost care, consideration and ~ time.
While we wait, read about Fotografiska’s founders, Jan and Per Bronman. Through the process of preserving the building and its original details, the dedicated team of architects, contractors and construction workers are working to carefully protect the structure, while bringing to life an entirely new concept within its walls.
With Galleries in Tallinn, Estonia and London’s Whitchapel, here is the team that will helm the New York gallery.
Fotografiska is located at 281 Park Avenue South in the Flatiron District, NYC.