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Martina Hoogland Ivanow, Satellite

Anne Kathrin Greiner, Disciplined Spaces



Behind the visual

In The Gallery is proud to present the two-person-show “Behind the visual”, featuring work by Stockholm-based photographer Martina Hoogland Ivanow, showing her series Satellite and Berlin-based photographer Anne Kathrin Greiner, presenting part of her series Disciplined Spaces.

In Satellite Martina Hoogland Ivanow has visited “alternative” communities, eco villages, rainbow gathering rings, lajvare, and other established “new age” societies in Sweden and abroad. Although the project is associated with traditions in documentary, and even takes a sociological angle, the series, which consist of 34 images, is brought together as a narrative structure, and presents us visually with what emerges as a subjective investigation. Presented with Martina Hoogland Ivanow’s work, we are led by a textual gloominess of tone and the camera’s subjective angle seems to capture the spaces and connections between the figures rather than showing us conventional portraits of the communities. The sociological perspective is seen in Hoogland Ivanow’s interest in, as she writes, “theatrical aspects of human relationships and a curiosity about a social phenomenon with a seemingly ever-growing interest in alternative living.”

This “theatrical aspect” is one of the invisible links to the work by Anne Kathrin Greiner, a constructed reality, which could reveal an underpinning interest in “the macro level of systems” as seen in for instance in Sociology. In the series Disciplined Spaces, Anne Kathrin Greiner photographs schools she attended between the ages of seven and nineteen. The spaces emerge like stages, not as a “crime scene” or aftermath of an event, as indexical signs seemed to have been removed, but rather as the bare structural indicator, the stage. Greiner is interested in “the visible and invisible structures which shape our everyday lives” which could be, as in Disciplined Spaces, architectural surroundings, which for Greiner act in a “metaphorical way and raise questions about the level in which our everyday surroundings have an impact on our actions and behavior”, as she describes it in her artist’s statement.

Although, Anne Kathrin Greiner and Martina Hoogland Ivanow emerge visually from two different angles, both artists share one major visual similarity, the hiddenness and secrecy within the photographs. Thus, photographing people in their environment, Hoogland Ivanow only rarely lets us see the faces, the photographs rather appear as a daydream, where the viewer floats in and out of reality. Greiner’s series does not appear as a daydream but her work still “portraits” the stillness of the air in the locations; an “air” or invisible presence of something else, which she shares with Hoogland Ivanow’s work.  Both artists seem to be interested in looking beyond the visual layers of interpretations and lead us to the underlying structures, which might or might not be subjective. In this way the viewer plays an active part as the interpreter and editor.