Portable Monuments: Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin

Plate 23, Poor Monuments, Aircraft, at right, is seen as it is about to fly into the World Trade Center in New York on Tuesday. The aircraft was the second to fly into the tower Tuesday morning, http://www.forrestmarketing.com/ worldtradecenters/attack.html, 2011, © Broomberg and Chanarin

Exhibition on view:
January 14–February 18, 2012

Galerie Gabriel Rolt
Elandsgracht 34
1016 TW Amsterdam
+31 (0) 20 78 55 146

Galerie Gabriel Rolt presents Poor Monuments, a series of 85 works on paper reappropriated from Bertolt Brecht’s book, War Primer. The UK-based team, Adam Broomberg and Oliver Chanarin, identify images comparable to our present day from Brecht’s book. Instead of correlating them to World War II as Brecht did, they are revised to embody the “War on Terror.”

The contemporary representation is exemplified through a red box over Brecht’s original image. Here the titles of the source photograph and web address are stated rather than the image itself. In this vein, Broomberg and Chanarin question what has remained similar and what has changed in terms of the fabrication, utilization, and delivery of war photography.

Exhibited for the first time alongside Poor Monuments is Portable Monuments, a further analyzation of Brecht’s poems, where seemingly unsophisticated colored blocks are used to develop a code for investigating and dissecting the photographic image.

Broomberg and Chanarin have been featured in Aperture issues 185 and 204.