Galerie Wagner + Partner
 Galerie Wagner + Partner

Belvédère - Weiß war der Schnee

Thomas Wrede’s photographic project about the Rhône glacier

9/13/2019 – 10/19/2019

Belvédère is a small town on the edge of the Rhône Glacier. Photo artist Thomas Wrede spent the last two years investigating issues related to the glacier and its transformation through climate change. For over 150 years, tourists have visited the glacier and its cave; however, global warming poses a real danger to this spectacle. Nonetheless, by using fleece blankets, the inevitability of glacial melt can be decelerated. Gallery Wagner + Partner is pleased to première Wrede's new series with this solo exhibition.

Due to weathering as well as constant glacial drift, the fleece blankets deteriorate and must be regularly replaced. Artistically, Thomas Wrede explored this fascinating interweaving of a naturally evolving landscape with that that was impacted by human intervention. The results are beguilingly aesthetic images, which are - at the same time - documentation of an irrevocable process. With this in mind, Wrede captured interior and exterior images of this glacial cave near Belvédère.

Connoisseurs of Thomas Wrede’s oeuvre - think of the significant survey exhibition in the Von der Heydt Kunsthalle - will remember his Samsø series from the early 90s; this selection of works is also exhibited. For Samsø, the artist addressed a comparable issue with the same sensitivity - that of the use of plastic wrap to enable an early potato harvest on the Danish holiday island of the same name. Over time, the plastic wrap morphed into plastic garbage, which also considerably altered the perception of the landscape. Samsø, which is presented in impressive black and white silver gelatin prints, highlights the fact that Wrede’s investigations of such issues had already begun in the 90s; he has developed his artistic exploration further and in colour for this current exhibition, Belvédère.

The Artist:
Thomas Wrede (b. 1963 in Iserlohn) lives and works in Münster. He is Professor of Photography and Media Art at the College of Fine Arts Essen. Wrede has exhibited in Germany and abroad since the early 90s and his works are held in numerous international collections. Thomas Wrede is working for more than 25 years in the field of nature and landscape photography. In his oeuvre he is questioning the borders of reality and staging. Natural and artificial seem to melt in either documentary or staging aspects of photography.