Carina Brandes: Mother’s Tongue

Cat. Kunstverein Heilbronn

Exhibition catalogue, edited by Matthia Löbke
text (German/English) by Sebastian Jaehn, Matthia Löbke
112 p with 110 Duotone illustrations
300 x 225 mm, softcover

ISBN 978-3-86442-261-4

26,00 €

abject / object / subject

The main focus of Carina Brandes’s (*1982) photographic work – exhibited 2018 at Kunstverein Heilbronn – is her own body, which she uses as a material in her work – in a rather de­tached manner, according to currently popular ­interpretation. This results in surreal confrontations between her body and the most diverse object worlds, which turns the seemingly everyday settings into mysterious events full of latent desires. In the context of current gender and body politics, the female body is commonly associated with horror and sex, with maltreated victims, or demoted to titillating advertising material. Carina Brandes counters this by presenting it in a rather ambiguous way in a world deliberately devoid of men that might as much be determined by an abject objectivity as by sensual and humorous moments. As a former gymnast, the artist has been familiar with her body as a medium she has shaped since her earliest youth. She works mostly alone and always uses analogue photographic technology. Her playful and dynamic approach transcends the interplay of sensation and external stimulus, of subject and object, be­yond the feminist questions previously formulated by the rather classical positions of Ana Mendieta, Maria Lassnig, Valie Export and Cindy Sherman. As the laureate of Villa Romana 2017, she has ­developed new works in Florence that have been included in the comprehensive survey of her work first published in this volume.