The light falls on the forehead and makes the eye sockets appear even darker. The lips seem bitter and haggard. The photographs of the sculptures by alberto giacometti (1901-1966) were taken by peter lindbergh.
An unusual subject for the german photographer, lindbergh has become a star with his unique black-and-white photos of actors and supermodels.
The photographs are on display at the giacometti institute in paris, which opened about six months ago. An exhibition that is rightly entitled "capturing the invisible. Shown until 24. March over 60 photographs and sculptures in dialogue with each other.
Lindbergh didn’t just take pictures of sculptures. He was not interested in this kind of thing at all, he says in an interview with the german press agency in paris. "Basically, i found the idea of photographing sculptures boring at first. But then something really great happened."
What the 74-year-old means by this becomes clear with a glance at the work show. One has the impression that giacometti’s sculptures are alive and moving. Giacometti’s small standing woman (femme poseuse I), which lindbergh depicted in a rough triptych, casts a gaze at the visitor that is captivating because of its profundity. The giant composition "three figures and a head" reminds of a shadow theater, in which the figures start to live.
Giacometti wore himself out on his works, destroying them again and again in an attempt to capture the gaze of the model, because for giacometti the gaze was the access to the soul. Like giacometti, lindbergh also seeks to capture something that goes beyond the gaze and the portrait: "something is created that is held for you, but which you are not at all."
Lindbergh’s portraits are not images of people. "A person is so complex and intelligent, you can’t photograph that."Lindbergh searches for what is hidden behind a person, like giacometti, who once said that it is impossible to reproduce what one sees.
Giacometti and lindbergh: a juxtaposition that is initially disconcerting. At the end of the exhibition, however, the dialogue seems almost self-evident: her search for the "intangible," her extensive renunciation of color, and her very personal aesthetic. For lindbergh, giacometti is the epitome of artist and art, because he has long been searching for his own way.
Lindbergh’s new adventure began in 2015. He was asked if he could take photos of the swiss artist’s works at the alberto giacometti foundation in zurich. In paris, he then continued his work at the giacometti institute. A work in progress: "these are great photos, but I haven’t got anywhere yet."