Bernd Jansen

Year of birth, place
1945, Bedburg, Germany
Role at the ZKM
in the collection
Bernd Jansen was born in Bedburg on Niederrhein in 1945. From 1966 to 1971 he studied Photography under Otto Steinert at the Folkwangschule in the Werder district of Essen. In 1972 he received the Förderpreis zum Heinrich-Heine-Preis, awarded by the city of Düsseldorf; and in 1978-79 he was able to spend a year in New York with a grant again awarded by the city of Düsseldorf, where he now lives and works.

Jansen made his name as a photographer with his record of contemporary art life in Düsseldorf. During the 1970s he produced numerous portraits of Düsseldorf artists in the context of their life and work. During the 1980s and 1990s he created several series of photographs with sculptural themes. Jansen has also photographed architectural motifs, exhibiting the resulting images in heavy iron frames. He goes further in adopting the building materials of the depicted subjects, in as far as he repeats the construction of his motif - be it the Eiffel Tower or the Williamsburg Bridge - in the design of the frame itself. Jansen usually photographs his subjects without any back- ground. He reproduces the photographs on transparent foil, mounting them on city maps, lists of streets and other such material. In the case of a series of photographs of cats made since the early 1990s, the images, placed on foil, are pierced by burn holes and have frames made of wood and steel.

Individual exhibitions (selection)
1972 »50 Düsseldorfer Künstler«, Photogalerie Staatliche Landesbildstelle, Hamburg
1973 »Portraits aus der Düsseldorfer Kunstszene«, Spectrum Photogalerie, Hannover
1975 »Portraits aus der Düsseldorfer Kunstszene: Fotografien 1968-75«, Kunstmuseum Düsseldorf
1979 »Empty Shots«, PS1 (Project Studio One), New York
1980 »Die umgekehrten Bilder: Fotografie«, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf
1990 »Materialrückerstattung: Skulptur nach Fotografie«, Galerie Wolfgang Gmyrek, Düsseldorf
1990 »Die Rückreise: Fotografien zum Skulpturenprojekt von Till Hausmann«, Schifffahrt-Museum, Düsseldorf
1994 »Tiefer Einbrand. Neue Arbeiten mit Fotografie«, Galerie Wolfgang Gmyrek, Düsseldorf
1995 »50 Künstlerportraits 1968-1995«, Galerie Wolfgang Gmyrek, Düsseldorf
Group exhibitions (selection)
1967 »Otto Steinert und Schüler. Fotografie als Bildgestaltung«, Museum Folkwang, Essen
1973 »Points de vue sur le portrait. Quatre photographes et leur maître«, Société Française de Photographie, Paris
1975 »Fotografie 1929/1975«, Württembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart
1979 »Fotografie 1919-1979: Made in Germany«, Münchner Stadtmuseum, Munich
1983 »Photographie in Deutschland: Heute«, Koninklijke Akademie voor Schone Kunsten, Ghent, subsequently at Fotogalerij, Cultureel Centrum, Hasselt, Galerie du Musée de la Photographie, Charleroi, Het Wapenschild, Antwerpen
1985 »Zeitgenössische deutsche Fotografen: Neue Arbeiten«, Museum für Photographie, Braunschweig
1986 »Hände«, Galerie Rudolf Kicken, Cologne; »Denken! Denken an Joseph Beuys«, Galerie Ilverich, Meerbusch
1990 »Otto Steinert und Schüler«, Museum Folkwang, Essen
1991 »Joseph Beuys. Aprovechar a las ánimas«, »Sa Nostra«, Centre de Cultura, Caixa Balears, Palma de Mallorca
1992 »Mythos Rhein«, Kunstverein Ludwigshafen
1995 »Spectrum Photogalerie 1972-1991. Ein Rückblick«, Sprengel Museum Hannover
1996 »Dreiunddrei«, Atelierhaus Bilker Straße 12, Düsseldorf

​[David Richardt, 1997]