In Silent Warriors, Eric Klemm recalls the
photographic tradition of American photographer
Edward Curtis, whose pictorialist aesthetic
created a romanticized ethnography of North
American Indians and constructed a cultural memory
rooted in sentiment. For this series, Klemm
traveled through Canada and the United States,
compiling 300 portraits over the course of one year.
Klemm deconstructs the grand narrative associated
with Curtis’ images of the North American Indian
and his portraits reveal a contemporary,
straightforward and vital depiction of reality.
While Curtis embraced pose and embellishment,
Klemm decidedly avoids this, and relies on the
spontaneity of his encounters with his subjects
and the relationship fostered from that moment.
Whether capturing a subject dressed for a ceremony
or in everday clothes, Klemm photographs against a
pure white backdrop and uses only natural light,
removing any opportunity for assumption. There is
no pretense and Klemm's images silently
communicate pathos, pride and defiance. These
uncompromising portraits offer a relevant and
realistic visual record of the human spirit.
This award winning series will be published by
Stiedl in the fall of 2008 and a limited edition
version of the book will be available during the
exhibition. A selection of Klemm’s Shavings series
will also be on view.
Curated by Odon Wagner