Susanne Kriemann, Gessenwiese, Kanigsberg

Susanne Kriemann

Gessenwiese, Kanigsberg

In Gessenwiese, Kanigsberg, Kriemann will show a series of unique Héliogravures portraying plants and herbs that grow at former uranium mines in the eastern part of Germany.

Gessenwiese and Kanigsberg are former uranium mining territories in the GDR (1949–1990). Kriemann undertook field research with geologists and biologists from the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena who study the accumulatation of heavy metals in plants during the re-naturalisation processes in the area. She identified the three herbs most capable of extracting and storing their environmental pollutants: Falsche Kamille, Wilde Möhre, and Bitterkraut (False Chamomile, Wild Carrot, Ox Tongue). Concerned with the invisibility of radioactivity, Kriemann photographed these three types of herbs and harvested the plant material afterwards in order to make pigments for the production of Héliogravures.

Héliogravure is the oldest procedure for reproducing photographic images. It was first invented in the early 19th century by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce and was later perfected by William Henry Fox Talbot. This gravure printing is an elaborate process which enables subtle changes in the gradation of colour. The enigma of the prints is enhanced by tinting the printing plates with pigments containing uranium and other heavy metals from the plants and herbs depicted in the images.

Kriemann, professor at the University of Art and Design in Karlsruhe (DE), has a practice which consists mainly of photography, printed matter and the appropriation of photographic imagery. She has participated in numerous international biennials such as the 11th Shanghai Biennale (CN) 2016, TRACK Gent (BE) 2012, and the 5th Berlin Biennale (DE) 2008. Comprehensive solo exhibitions of her work have been mounted by Kunstforum Baloise (CH) 2017, The Schering Stiftung, Berlin, and Pre-fix ICA in Toronto (CA) in 2016; 21-er Haus, Vienna (AT) and Arnofilni, Bristol (UK) in 2013; Kunstverein Braunschweig (DE) 2012; the Kunsthalle Winterthur (CH) 2011; Berlinische Galerie (DE) 2010; SMBA in Amsterdam (NL) 2009; and Künstlerhaus Stuttgart (DE) 2009. In the last five years she has participated in numerous group shows, including at Portikus, Frankfurt (DE), Witte de With Rotterdam (NL), Landesmuseum Linz (AT), Konstmuseum Malmö (SE), Presentation House Gallery, Vancouver (CA), Kunstverein in Hamburg (DE) and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago (US). In 2018 she will have a solo show at The Wattis Institute, San Francisco (US).

Click here to download press release as PDF

Susanne Kriemann, Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann, Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann, Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann, Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann, Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann, 'Kanigsberg, Library for Radioactive Afterlife' in Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann, 'Kanigsberg, Library for Radioactive Afterlife' in Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann, 'Kanigsberg, Library for Radioactive Afterlife' in Gessenweise, Kanigsberg (2017) Installation view. Photo: Tor Jonsson
Susanne Kriemann(br/> Pechblende (Volume-Cycle 2), Wilde Möhre, 2017
Helio engraving (wild carrot pigment 0,8 g. soot), handmade cottonrag paper, cherry wood frame 84,6 x 64,4 cm, framed, unique (SK2017-1)
Susanne Kniemann
Pechblende (Volume-Cycle 2), Restpflanzen, 2017
Plant remains of Field Chamomile, Wild Carrot, Ox Tongue Helio engraving (plant remainder pigment 0,5 g. soot), handmade cottonrag paper, ash frame 84,6 x 64,4 cm, framed, unique (SK2017-4)
Susanne Kriemann
Pechblende (Volume-Cycle 2), Kanigsberg, 2017
Plant remains of Field Chamomile, Wild Carrot, Ox Tongue Helio engraving (0.6 g. soot), handmade cottonrag paper, birch frame 64,4 cm x 84,6, framed, unique (SK2017-2)
Susanne Kniemann
Pechblende (Volume-Cycle 2), Restpflanzen, 2017
Plant remains of Field Chamomile, Wild Carrot, Ox Tongue Helio engraving (plant remainder pigment 0,9 g. soot), handmade cottonrag paper, oak frame 84,6 x 64,4 cm, framed, unique (SK2017-3)
Susanne Kniemann
Pechblende (Volume-Cycle 2), Restpflanzen, 2017
Susanne Kniemann
Pechblende (Volume-Cycle 2), Falsche Kamille, 2017
Plant remains of Field Chamomile, Wild Carrot, Ox Tongue Helio engraving (field chamomile pigment 0,8 g. soot), handmade cottonrag paper, walnut frame 84,6 x 64,4 cm, framed, unique (SK2017-6)
Susanne Kniemann
Pechblende (Volume-Cycle 2), Falsche Kamille, 2017
Plant remains of Field Chamomile, Wild Carrot, Ox Tongue Helio engraving (field chamomile pigment 0,8 g. soot), handmade cottonrag paper, walnut frame 84,6 x 64,4 cm, framed, unique (SK2017-7)