Songs Of The Sky. Photography & The Cloud, C/O Berlin

December 11, 2021 - April 21, 2022
Opening: Friday, December 10, 2021, 20:00

As early as 1922, the famous American photographer Alfred Stieglitz turned his camera to the sky for the first time “to find out what [he] had learned in 40 years about photography.” His series of cloud pictures, which he initially called Songs of the Sky before they became famous as Equivalents, paved the way to abstraction for a medium that had been associated with the depiction of reality. A century later, the thematic exhibition _Songs of the Sky . Photography & the Cloud _uses the original title to discuss the current change in photography due to digitalization and its consequences. Thinking about photography today entails a consideration of the infrastructures that form and organize networks. Regardless of whether images are generated by surveillance cameras or satellites, or consist of digitized archival material or personal vacation photographs on our smartphones and laptops, all photographs are saved on the cloud operated by artificial intelligence.

Similar to the way that clouds resonated in the beginning of abstraction in photography one hundred years ago, the way artists today interact with the cloud reflects the twenty-first century’s visions of the future. Juxtaposing historical and contemporary cloud photographs, the exhibition _Songs of the Sky . Photography & the Cloud _mirrors the consequences of cloud-computing technology on climate change and geopolitics. What stories can photographs relate about the “soul of the sky” (Étienne Pitois) in the digital age?

Will commercial enterprises that maximize their earnings by evaluating and using our cloud data end up buying all of the clouds in the sky? Will the immense carbon footprint of the technical cloud accelerate global warming to such an extent that in the future it will be rare to see many-faced cloud creatures floating by in the sky? _Songs of the Sky . Photography & the Cloud _was curated by Dr. Kathrin Schönegg. The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalog that was published by Spector Books, Leipzig.

Includes works by Claudia Angelmaier, Sylvia Ballhause, Marie Clerel, Raphaël Dallaporta, Fragmentin, Noémie Goudal, Louis Henderson, Internationales Meteorologisches Komitee, Noa Jansma, Stefan Karrer, Almut Linde, NASA, Observatoire de Juvisy, Lisa Oppenheim, Trevor Paglen, Meghann Riepenhoff, Simon Roberts, Evan Roth, Mario Santamaría, Adrian Sauer, Andy Sewell, Shinseungback Kimyonghun, and Louis Vignes & Charles Nègre.

Related works:
Cool clouds that look like they should be spelling something, but they don't