24 MARCH – 21 APRIL 2012

Johann König, Berlin is pleased to present the second solo exhibition of works by Annette Kelm.

Annette Kelm’s new works show the lines of physical forces caused by the random scattering and piling of iron shavings on yellow and green paper backgrounds. At first glance, one might see these as depictions of experimental systems such as those used to represent ferromagnetic forces in lexical entries on Wikipedia or in school experiments, in other words - scientific photography. This impression is shaken by Annette Kelm’s use of diffused light and various dispersions. Some of the photographic works create an almost three-dimensional effect where on closer examination, lines dissolve into powdery, jagged piles of dirt or smears, whereas some are still clearly recognizable as magnetic field lines. Two still lifes of poppies and a repeated motif of the iron shavings interrupt the latters’ seriality.

Since its discovery in antiquity, magnetism is a motif that has been placed in various categories and classification systems. The history of science has largely been shaped by its functions. Present in electromagnetic data carriers, electric generators, transformers as well and MRI scanners, it plays a decisive role in both daily life and critical science. Up until the last century, alongside its discovery and early applications in the natural sciences, magnetism was also seen as a mysterious phenomenon. The attraction and repulsion of two magnets have been understood as an allegory for love and hatred between people. To date, magnetism is veiled within the manifestation of the magical.



Annette Kelm (b. in 1975 in Stuttgart, Germany) lives and works in Berlin. She studied at Hochschule für Bildende Künste Hamburg and is one of the most important representatives of contemporary photography in Germany. Themes of seeing and displaying, the constructed nature of images, as well as the disclosure of the circumstances of their production, run through Annette Kelm's work, in which documentary and staged images stand alongside one another.

In her still lifes, portraits, landscape, and architectural photographs, Kelm documents the modern everyday culture and often uses object photography to do so. Removed from their original ...
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