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Anton Corbijn, Philip Seymour Hoffman, New York 2011 © Anton Corbijn

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Anton Corbijn

Favourite Darkness

20.02.2025 - 29.06.2025

Anton Corbijn, David Bowie, Chicago 1980 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Jodie Foster, Hollywood 1995 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Dave Gahan, Frankfurt 1993 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Liam und Noel Gallagher, Long Island, 1995 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Miles Davis, Montreal 1985 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Gerhard Richter, Köln 2010 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Nina Hagen und Ari Up, Malibu 1980 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Ian Curtis, Manchester 1980 © Anton CorbijnAnton Corbijn, Arcade Fire, Marseille 2010 © Anton Corbijn

The spring exhibition 2025 at the Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien is dedicated to an artist who works with photography, film and design across different media and has significantly shaped the way we understand and perceive pop culture since the mid 70s: Anton Corbijn, who was born in Strijen, in The Netherlands, in 1955, lived in London for over 30 years, and now lives and works in Amsterdam. Over the course of his international career, which spans five decades, he has created countless iconic, mostly black and white portraits of artists from the worlds of music, film, literature, art and fashion, which are the focus of the exhibition, taking place around the artist's 70th birthday.

To reduce Cobijn's artistic oeuvre to his photography alone would be far too short-sighted: Starting with his early images of Joy Division and his time at the New Musical Express (NME) in London in the early 1980s, the exhibition unfolds a tour d'horizon through photographic portraits, music videos, album design and on-stage visuals that he created for Depeche Mode, for example, through to lesser-known shots, some of which have never been shown before, and a final room with portraits of visual artists, many of whom have already exhibited their work at the Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien. The central aim of the exhibition is to highlight the links between Corbijn's photographic and filmic work and art history - which may also explain why his works often appear familiar and accessible to the public. Corbijn's visual language is always reduced and committed to simple, archaic forms and proves to be strongly influenced by Christian iconography. Artists who pose in front of Corbijn's camera appear undisguised and authentic; the artist often achieves this by placing his protagonists in unusual settings. Corbijn, who emphasizes that he "wanted to be close to the creative people with the camera", sets a very unique, recognizable tone in his artistic work. The melancholy, dark images open up a view behind the celebrity mask and capture the essentials - people and their fragility and ephemerality.

 

 

Anton Corbijn has also been working very successfully as a filmmaker for many years. As part of the exhibition at the Bank Austria Kunstforum Wien, the Vienna Gartenbaukino is showing a retrospective of Anton Corbijn's filmic work.

 

 

Opening on February 19th, 2025

curated by

Lisa Ortner-Kreil

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