1 August 2014 until 18 January 2015
The Committed Picture
The Photography Department in Context

The 1950s and 1960s were a heyday of photo reporting, commissioned by a whole range of newly founded magazines such as Kristall, Revue, Quick or Stern. Inspired by the idea that photography is a language universally understood all over the world, many photojournalists see their work as an expression of socially critical commitment and political responsibility. They take their photographs as authentic documentation of reality which confront the observer with the evils of the world, suffering and violence and appeal to his compassion and sense of responsibility over and above their value as information. The exhibition “The Committed Picture” focuses on photojournalism in the post-war period. On top of this, it presents one of the main emphases of the Department for photography and new media in the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg (MKG), which already laid the foundations for the collection with acquisitions in the early 1960s. More than 40 works by Jürgen Heinemann, Ryuichi Hirokawa, Thomas Hoepker, Kaku Kurita, Robert Lebeck, Peter Magubane, Marc Riboud, Sebastião Salgado and Max Scheler will be on display. They document the developments and the aesthetic strategies of the genre since the 1960s. The series of exhibitions under the title of “The Photography Department in Context“ will accompany the indexing of the collection on scientific principles and reveals the different methods by which photography can be employed.

Ill.: Max Scheler, Slums in an Industrial Area of Birmingham, Alabama 1964, silver gelatine, 30,3 x 48,9 cm, © Max Scheler Estate, Hamburg