© Tobias Grewe
© Kathrin Edwards
© Kathrin Edwards
mar 13th - aug 31st 20
mar 13th 20
With the exhibition RAW, the Cologne-based photo artist Tobias Grewe (b. 1975) focusses on the pureness, simplicity, and honesty of a building material that has repeatedly influenced his view over the past years: concrete. A material that has generated an incredibly rich formal language, in particular in the architectural style of Brutalism. Grewe encountered this language time and again on his travels, and its complex design structures soon began to play an important role in his own imagery. From Rio to Vienna, from Cologne to Utrecht, São Paulo, and Berlin, Grewe examined architectural details of predominantly Brutalist buildings and, with these photographic compositions, spans a multifaceted arc of tension that allows the material—stereotypically characterized as gray and dreary—to blossom in the new context of a group of works dedicated specifically to concrete. For the first time, RAW brings together the complete series, created between 2013 and 2019.
Brutalism originally stood for an architecture that had the idealized claim of being “honest” in terms of material and construction and ethical with regard to its social aspect. Here, we find a parallel to the work of Tobias Grewe, who has always dedicated his photography to the pure and unadulterated. The various meanings of the term “raw” put this approach in a nutshell: “rough, unprocessed, candid”.
Grewe describes the visual quality of these buildings as overwhelming in their complexity. The artistic process ultimately leads via this moment of awe—captured by the camera—to new insights.
Open yourself up to the many facets of grey in its purest form: RAW.