Herlinde Koelbl is one of Germanys most renowned photographers and producers of documentary films. This exhibition at the Münchner Stadtmuseum
displays her multifaceted works. Special emphasis is placed on her photo series Das deutsche Wohnzimmer [The German Living Room] which was started in 1980 and portrays people from different social strata inside their living rooms.
Similar in topic is her 2002 work Schlafzimmer [Bedrooms]. For this series, Herlinde Koelbl traveled to numerous international metropolises to photograph inhabitants in their most private of refuges. The depictions of the male body in her book Männer [Men] which was published in 1984 combine sensuality with aggression.
The photographer also takes an unusual and entirely new look at the naked female body. Her book Starke Frauen [Strong Women] shows not the common image of the beautiful and slim woman but showcases models whose aesthetics are derived from their full bodies, vitality and presence. With her 1986 work Feine Leute [Fancy People: High Society], Herlinde Koelbl paints a picture that dissects the mores of high society.
A few years later she created the 1989 photography series Jüdische Porträts [Jewish Portraits] in which the artist portrayed, in pictures and text, Jewish personalities from all over the world who had exerted an influence on Germanys spiritual and cultural heritage. Over an eight year period starting in 1991, the photographer also captured the Federal Republics political and economic elite in her series Spuren der Macht [Traces of Power].
Herlinde Koelbls projects carry her unconventional and unmistakable artistic signature. Courageous candor and uncompromising clarity are her style. Her pictures convey a sense of intensive involvement with the subject, a sharing of intimate moments, and they fascinate the viewer with their forceful imagery.