The life and work of DDR photographer Helga Paris / Free lecture by Inka Schube

On Sunday 24 March art historian Inka Schube, curator of photography at the Sprengel Museum in Hannover, will be our guest in Huis Marseille. The first large monograph of Helga Paris was edited by Inka Schube and published by the Sprengel Museum in 2004. In the autumn of 2019, the Akademie der Künste in Berlin will dedicate a major retrospective to Helga Paris’ work. As curator of this first retrospective, Inka Schube has found a lot of new and unknown material, which she will now present for the first time in Huis Marseille in her lecture.

Huis Marseille has a world first by showing the complete ‘Mappenwerk’ (work from portfolios) by Helga Paris. Helga Paris is one of the four photographers who are part of the exhibition Futures Past & Present, together with Céline van Balen, Julie Greve and Esther Kroon. The exhibition will be on view at Huis Marseille until 2 June.

As a result of the Cold War, the remarkable oeuvre of the German photographer Helga Paris (1938) was long almost unknown west of the Iron Curtain. While Paris enjoyed widespread popularity in East Germany, her photographs rarely reached a public in the West. Although her work, with its quite intimate glimpses of daily life in East Germany, is strongly linked to the course of her own life, its expressiveness is universal. The empathy of her gaze makes it easy for us to imagine ourselves in the people and places she photographed.

On one hand Helga Paris’ photographs are about life in the German Democratic Republic (DDR), where the Second World War and the country’s communist regime brought restriction, loss, destruction and decline in their wake. On the other they show the gaze of a photographer who faced the world with resilience, curiosity and compassion. The accent in Huis Marseille’s exhibition of her work is on East Germany before and after the Wende (1989–1990).

Inka Schube (1961) has been the Sprengel Museum Hannover’s curator of photography and media art since 2001. She has curated exhibitions on the work of Sophie Calle, Shirana Shahbazi, Thomas Ruff, Helen Levitt, Boris Mikhailov and Helga Paris. Schube has published various articles on Helga Paris’ work, including in Helga Paris Fotografie (Sprengel Museum, Hanover, 2004) and Helga Paris. Photography (Ifa Stuttgart / Hatje Cantz, 2013).

In the years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Raymond van den Boogaard (1951) was a correspondent for NRC Handelsblad and therefore experienced the decline of the German Democratic Republic from up close. For the same newspaper he was also a correspondent in Moscow and former Yugoslavia, and chief art editor.

The lecture will be given in English. Afterwards there will be a Q&A by Raymond van den Boogaard.

This event is free (excl. museum admission).
Free admission with your Museumkaart.
RSVP for this event is not possible, please arrive in time to ensure your attendance.

In collaboration with the Goethe-Institut Amsterdam.