The New Europeans
October 4 - November 10, 2007
Stephen Wirtz Gallery presents a selection of photographs from a series in progress by Jim Goldberg with the working title The New Europeans. This is the premiere exhibition of this acclaimed work for which Goldberg received the prestigious 2007 HCB Award. This project reveals the journeys of populations of refugee, immigrant, and trafficked people, who travel from war torn and economically devastated countries, to make new homes in Europe. The work will be exhibited at the Fondation Cartier-Bresson, Paris, in April 2009.
The New Europeans is a large and multi-layered body of work consisting of photographs and oral histories – handwritings on Polaroids in different languages, video recordings, written text, and ephemera. Wirtz Gallery’s exhibition will present a portion of work from the series, concentrating on a four-year period when Goldberg was in the countries of Greece and Ukraine. The project documents immigrant populations who reside in compromised living situations, often on the margins of society. Photographs that are difficult and often disturbing are combined in the exhibition with more conventionally beautiful, enigmatic images of landscape and portraiture, challenging accepted notions of beauty and the abject. Presented is a stunning, multi-faceted installation that includes large-scale photographic landscapes and portraits, along with unique Polaroids, photo collage, a salon-style installation of individual prints and ephemera, as well as a maquette of a book in progress. The unrestrained presentation is in keeping with the subversive installation style that Goldberg is known for.