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Espen Gleditsch - Neues bauen, Angle 13°

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Angle 13° by Espen Gleditsch
Neues bauen

14,8 x 20 cm
24 pages
Offset print
Edition of 300, numbered


This publication concentrates on the Functionalist stylistic register and ideology. Espen Gleditsch takes his point of departure in the architecture exhibition Weissenhofziedlung in Stuttgart, which opened in 1927 with the Functionalist icon Mies van der Rohe as artistic director. The criteria for the apartment blocks in the competition required all facades to be white and all roofs to be flat. But most of these houses were in fact painted in bright colours, although the black-and-white photographs in the catalogue maintained the impression of whiteness. The whiteness of the modern architecture was disseminated through the press, an impression that is still being reproduced. 

Gleditsch has photographed these buildings, but the light is what strikes the eye. The light got into the camera and was manifested by the developing of the pictures. This leakage has created intense cones of light that cut through the rigorous, elegant facades, but have also made the buildings dissolve slightly, like ghostly imprints. The camera confirms and erases in a simultaneous action. Through the pages of this book you can sense that the natural light strikes the retina, not only depicting the subject. So once more the mechanics of the camera have created an optical misrepresentation of these buildings, almost 90 years after the first pictures were taken. Gleditsch maintains the black-and-white photographic register, such that the colours are not revealed this time either. Neues Bauen poses timely questions about how far we can rely on the photograph as factual representation; the interpretation of history is constantly accompanied by possible leakages of light.



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