Barbara Klemm – Photographs
Johann Wolfgang Goethe – Drawings
March 16 to June 9, 2014

For her exhibition "Reisenotizen – Travel logs", the photographer Barbara Klemm (born 1939) walked in the steps of Johann Wolfgang Goethe (1749-1832). She shot pictures inspired from his drawings which now are first to be seen at Museum Sinclair House alongside to the poet's travel drawings. Goethe kept impressions of his views on places and landscapes during his travels and hikes in loads of sketches and rendered watercolors. Images from Thuringia, Switzerland, and Italy document his extended engagement in drawing. His works now triggered an unusual photographic quest.

Barbara Klemm, Wolkenstudie, 2013

As a photo journalist for Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, a German national daily paper, Barbara Klemm travelled around the globe and developed a body of landscape photography, off the political scene. She photographed motifs which Goethe, too, had drawn repeatedly, such as clouds, waterfalls, and trees. Local and motific interception like that are complemented in the exhibition through a more holistic cartography which moves in the coordinates of Goethe's travel drawings of Germany, Switzerland, and Italy.

Goethe tried to focus his general view and what he saw and perceived into small formats, colourwise hesitant drawings. Barbara Klemm's affinity to the small format and her consequent alignment to black and white photography to us seemed an interesting contemporary position for an encounter with the late 18th and early 19th century drawings. Both, Goethe and Klemm early in their live received an introduction to the view of an artist. Young Goethe sketched nature in drawing lessons his father had lured him to. And in Barbara Klemm early a sense of composition rose thanks to being the daughter of the painter Fritz Klemm.
Viewing bright eyed and openly led Barbara Klemm as well as Johann Wolfgang Goethe towards movement, departures into unknown terrain, and towards encounters with ever new motifs, which they froze in their drawings and photographies.

Through Klemm's photographies and Goethe's drawings, the exhibition unifies the individual contemporary media of travel documentation. In doing so, the works of the exhibition transcend documentation. In a way unmistakeable, Johann Wolfgang Goethe and Barbara Klemm framed their worldview in images.

Klassik Stiftung Weimar, which coproduced the exhibition, will take over "Reisenotizen – Travel logs" early in 2015.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue.

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