THE FACE: A Search for Clues

19 August 2017 - 25 February 2018

Deutsches Hygiene-Museum, Dresden


We see faces every day, often in personal, face-to-face encounters. But it’s much more than that: They constantly look back at us as portraits of prominent personalities in glossy magazines or on our computer screens, as selfies on the Internet, from posters and from paintings. Innumerable cameras and databases save images of faces. How does this ubiquitous media presence alter our relationship to the face itself? What influence does it have on our self-image and our communication? The exhibition seeks to explore such questions.

Most encounters with others begin by looking at their faces, and what we see there helps to form our first impressions. We frequently judge people by their faces or associate them with a social group. But how can we be so sure that someone is friendly or arrogant? And, what do others read into our faces?

Nothing can be done about one’s face—or so it’s said. It’s a part of the body that nature has given us. Still, we don’t just leave it at that. Every day we attend to our faces in front of a mirror with makeup, tweezers, and razors. What conceptions about ourselves are we pursuing? Which societal norms and fashions? And do our faces first become complete when we expose them to the views of others?

Taryn Simon, Charles Irvin Fain, Scene of the crime, the Snake River, Melba, Idaho, Served 18 years of a Death sentence for Murder, Rape and Kidnapping. The Innocents, 2002 © Taryn Simon

 Artists: Christoph Amberger, Marta dell’Angelo, Kader Attia,Brassaï, Thorsten Brinkmann, Broomberg & Chanarin, Claude Cahun, Chuck Close, Kate Cooper, Sterling Crispin, Hilde Doepp und Charlotte Rudolph, Moritz Fehr, Marc Garanger, Bruce Gilden, Asta Gröting, F.C. Gundlach, Gottfried Helnwein, Rudolf Herz, Peter Hujar, Peter Keetman, Jens Klein, Jan Kříženecký, Martin Langhorst, Robert Lebeck, Helmar Lerski, Jasper van Loenen, Elfriede Lohse-Wächtler, Robert Longo, George Maciunas, Ana Mendieta, Franz Xaver Messerschmidt, Paul Mobley, Zanele Muholi, Martin Munkácsi, Marcel Odenbach, Zaher Omareen und Ibrahim Fakhri, Joanna Rajkowska, Nous Sommes Bobby Watson, Leonardo Selvaggio, Cindy Sherman, Shinseungback Kimyonghun, Taryn Simon, Studio Braun, Ivonne Thein, Moritz Wehrmann and Andy Warhol


Developed in conjunction with Joomla extensions.