Gaa Gallery is pleased to present Studies by Sophia Hamann. Studies will be featured on the gallery’s ground level space and will run concurrently with Yael Ben-Zion’s Works from September 5 – October 11.
To study is characterized by attention, time and energy put towards acquiring knowledge. To study is to look closely, observe, and investigate. Through incorporating still and moving images, traditional black and white photography, film, drawing and painting, Hamann’s work explores themes of disappearance, absence, presence and movement. Controlled methods of display, mark making, and nuanced choices of subject matter and material create nearly tactile, sculptural photographs. Fragile ceramics, sculptural constructions and painting belong together with photography to realize works that convey delicate observations of locations, people, circumstances, and moments in time.
Hamann’s work draws on personal archive of images, film footage, and stills. Much of the works evolves in process, one work leading to another. Each piece existing on it’s own but in a wider context one can see the apparent sensitivity and attention to detail that characterizes the work. Straightforward technical and analog processes are intervened by the human hand. Through investigating moments in time where an event or action occurs, one second is captured and differentiated from another moment. Hamann is interested in creating fixed images that are at once still and in movement.
Disappearance and movement are central themes to Hamann’s work. In the exhibition Hamann presents a work entitled -(Läufer (-The Runners), an ongoing series of landscapes with images of people in forward motion moving away from the camera’s view. In -Läufer/11 (The Runners) one sees a keen physical and psychological attentiveness in the depictions of moments of departure and dissolve. In addition to The Runners, other works — (Berg) (Mountain), Dunkelkammer (Darkroom), Stills 3.2.2012 (Old-Cairo), and Hase/1 (Rabbit/1), create ambiguous narratives, suspended in time, absent of a clear beginning, middle, and end. In the large format print, Hase/1, a rabbit hangs in the crux of a tree branch. How exactly it got there is unknown. Through image and scale Hamann activates the viewer in a display marked by ominous undertones, implying that the viewer cannot distance themselves from the actions that have occurred or are about to occur. Hamann asks the viewer to engage both critically and physically in this dichotomy of scale and image, absence and presence, emergence and disappearance.
Hamann is a visual artist based in Braunschweig, Germany. Recent exhibitions include a solo exhibition at Klinikum Wolfsburg (Wolfsburg, Germany) and group exhibitions, Zwischenspiel: 5 × 2, Museum for Photography Braunschweig, Germany Looking for your Speech, Gallery Manzara, Istanbul, Turkey, Cairo. Open City, Museum for Photography Braunschweig, Germany, Experiment Archiv, University of Arts Braunschweig, Germany. She is currently in her final year of studies in the class of Walter Dahn at the University of Arts in Braunschweig.