This exhibition gathers 40 panoramic photographs bearing witness to major human construction projects, ranging from factories to quarries, from enormous mining complexes to abandoned post-industrial zones.
Josef Koudelka started using the panoramic format in 1986 while participating in the photographic mission of the DATAR, whose objective was to “represent the French landscape of the 1980s”. He thus criss-crossed France, then the entire world, to take stock of modern humanity’s influence on landscape.
The large-format panoramas can be seen in the historic Blower Hall of the LWL Industrial Museum until April 5, 2021.
“As an industrial museum, whose former smelters, mines and factories were part of this development, we see it as our special responsibility today to take up this discourse on resource consumption and environmental protection. Who, if not us?” explained Dirk Zache, director of the LWL-Industriemuseum.
Koudelka’s 2.8 meter wide panorama pictures are presented on double-sided, free-floating panels in the historic hall. “The Blower Hall provides an impressive backdrop for the pictures, which appear even more powerful due to the large machines in the background,” explains Patrick Thiemig, curator of the special exhibition.
Other works by Koudelka can currently also be seen in the Henrichenburg ship lift in Waltrop, another location of the LWL Industrial Museum (until October 4, 2020).