WIELS presents the first solo exhibition of Wolfgang Tillmans in Belgium. Tillmans, a world-renowned artist and one of the most influential figures of his generation is known for pushing the limits of photography as an artistic medium.
Tillmans’ ambition is nothing less than to capture the world we live in or, as he has said himself, to “make pictures that talk about what it feels like to be alive today.” From a large London round-about under construction to the Iranian underground scene, Tillmans invites us on a journey through our here and now, our contemporaneity. Like the ocean, which has neither beginning nor end, the present time is constantly agitated by contradictory movements—waves big and small clashing against each other, beneath and above the surface—that Tillmans brings to our attention in poetic ways. In so doing, he raises the question: when all is said and done, what exactly makes an image, an experience or an act political? As the social rights that were achieved in the course of the 1960s are being called into question, as waves of nationalism close people off into their own bubble, and as irrational beliefs supplant rationality in the way we see and make sense of the world, Tillmans’ project seems more essential and urgent than ever.
Presented on two floors, this major exhibition conceived especially for the spaces of WIELS will include several new groups of photographs that have never been shown before, as well as video installations and sound pieces.