Photobook Week Aarhus 2022: Off Balance
In late 2021 the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York sent a small, but decisive message: “At MoMA, we believe in the essential role of the photobook” and went on to explain the museum’s intention to play a “vital role” in this development, given that “the photobook has never been so essential as an element of photographic creativity”. As an important player in the field of photobooks, Photobook Week Aarhus (PWA) has always been dedicated to further exposing this important medium and for this reason it is our pleasure to announce this year’s theme PWA: Off Balance, 27–30 October 2022.
Off Balance is an attempt to cope with the imbalance of our contemporary condition. Climate change pressuring a possible catastrophe for humanity, the unsustainable gap between rich and poor, plastic pollution and the drastic decrease of biodiversity, and the first pandemic in over a century. These are examples of a world with complicated issues that need to be addressed but are constantly confronted with political divisions and economic interests. With the theme Off Balance, PWA brings the important photobook medium directly into the twisted realities of our current context. Besides the central festival theme, we will also showcase other themes such as Books on Books on Book, which have shaped an often-critiqued canon of publications. Our regional focus will be on Canada, as a Nordic country, with guest curator Louis Perreault, and a special focus on the books of Edward Burtynsky, who has been working on environmental issues for more than three decades. Another expedition on the geographical axis shall take us to Polynesia. This year we also present a special third regional focus with an exhibition about photobooks from Ukraine curated by Kateryna Radchenko. We wish to highlight the country’s art and culture in order to provide insight into a country that is currently at the centre of global politics, but which has not been widely explored or discussed in these terms.
A special highlight of the festival will be the showcasing of the NO!art Movement, and its three founding members, Boris Lurie, Sam Goodman and Stanley Fisher. With the generous support of the Boris Lurie Art Foundation, we will show key works from these three artists, as well as the legendary NO BOX, a multiple by the German Edition Hundertmark, published in 1996. This exhibition at our satellite venue, the HEART Museum will be on show until November 30 and will be accompanied by a catalog, with unpublished manifestos and texts from the early times of the NO!art Movement.
We envision Photobook Week Aarhus 2022 as an open and inclusive event that underlines the urgency for action, and the roles that art might play in the process of acceptance, grief, and collaborative action in the most important issues of our time.
Photobook Week Aarhus is a collaborative effort by Galleri Image and the Aarhus School of Architecture, with support from the City of Aarhus, the Boris Lurie Art Foundation, the Dreyers Fond, and Nordea Fonden, as well as our exhibition and communication partners.