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Artist Feature

Every week an artist is featured whose single image was published by Der Greif. The Feature shows the image in the original context of the series.

Tania Franco Klein - Our Life In The Shadows

Jan 10, 2018

Influenced by the pursuit of the American Dream lifestyle in the Western World and contemporary practices such as leisure, consumption, media overstimulation, eternal youth, and the psychological sequels they generate in our everyday private life. The project seeks to evoke a mood of isolation, desperation, vanishing, and anxiety, through fragmented images, that exist both in a fictional way and a real one.

 

Philosopher Byung-Chul Han says we live in an era of exhaustion and fatigue, caused by an incessant compulsion to perform. We have left behind the immunological era, and now experience the neuronal era characterized by neuropsychiatric diseases such as depression, attention deficit, hyperactivity disorder, burnout syndrome and bipolar disorder.

 

The constant need to escape, to always look outside. My characters find themselves almost anonymous, melting in places, vanishing into them, constantly looking for any possibility of escape. They find themselves alone, desperate and exhausted. Constantly in an odd line between trying and feeling defeated.


Artist Blog

The blog of Der Greif is written entirely by the artists who have been invited to doing an Artist-Feature. Every week, we have a different author.

Protect me from what I want

Jan 15, 2018 - Tania Franco Klein

This work by Jenny Holzer expresses from the first person what Byung-Chul Han talks about with The Burnout Society and what my characters are experiencing in my work

“We have to learn not-doing in a world obsessed with doing”

 

 

Thank You Der Greif for letting me share a little bit of my process and for your amazing input on the photographic industry.


The Burnout Society

Jan 14, 2018 - Tania Franco Klein

Byung-Chul Han develops the idea that under the constant exposure of slogans like “Yes We Can” which actually implies a “Yes We Should” we succumb ourselves to enter into a cycle of illusory freedom that is permanently obsessed with achievement. The positive language doesn’t allow us to point a finger to an enemy, because the enemy comes from within.

 

We went from having clear who was exploiting who — before the industrial revolution— to playing both the rolls of the exploiter and the exploited. We have become slaves to the culture of positivity and achievement and we voluntary suffocate ourselves under the ideas of passion and determination and on the possibilities of everything we can achieve without even contemplating if those are things we want. We willingly take on tasks to prove our self-worth and we just keep on going until we completely shut down. This has lead to an increase on neuropsychological disorders and the consumption of pills all over the world. We have lost the ability to contemplate, to not do.


“Yes We Should”

Jan 13, 2018 - Tania Franco Klein

With this project I ended up incorporating the ideas behind the book The Burnout Society which actually came into my life in the most unintentionally way while walking on a library a few months before I started this project but it somehow came back to my thoughts when I realized everything that I was trying to portray was related to the observations on that book. Byung-Chul Han author of The Burnout Society refers to our neoliberal social tissue as one that suffers from a constant exhaustion and fatigue due to an obsession with positivity; he names it the achievement society.


About stopping the machine

Jan 12, 2018 - Tania Franco Klein

My latest series Our Life In The Shadows grew in a very natural way. I was first working on a different project centered around the topic of the world as entertainment and the way we consume it (which I will probably come back in a point). But my circumstances and the ones of the people around me pulled me little by little into another direction and I allowed the project to grow on its own. I think is important to always listen to yourself in terms of which project is more important for you in the moment to grow as a person, not only as a photographer. At the time, I was really anxious about the world, I constantly felt conflicted and split into the person I thought I was supposed to be and the things I thought were the ones I should pursue with a constants guilt of feeling that anything I did was never enough, and the other part of me of wanting to completely vanish from the system and just find my own peace —and so were most of the people around me— so I decided to get deep into my own experience.

 

Is as if my work is just another way to get deep into myself to push me to other directions.  Every time I make a project I dismember every emotion that I go through into pieces to find the reason why I am feeling this or that way about the world around me, about myself and in my personal relationships, but also to try and understand why there is a huge wave of emotional breakdown in the people that surrounds me, and what is the social tissue that is supporting that state.


“I” and everything in between.

Jan 11, 2018 - Tania Franco Klein

I believe there is not bigger task in life than learning to live. We are born, we learn and then we reach a point were either we learn to deconstruct and to construct again over and over — with no particular order — or we continue to live the life we were shown to live.

 

We live in a really complex society. Were the idea of the self has become the center of our everyday life. The idea of the “I” as a self-directed achieving entity, always striving for more.I like to talk about life because I think art is about life itself, about the process of living, about construction and deconstruction and because time can pass and we will never get enough of the enigma of what being a human is, with everything it implies.

 

Social behavior in contemporary societies has always been something that I feel fascinated about, and photography became my way of investigating, observing and learning more about it. I like to think of my process and my work as a room for self reflection on contemporary life. And everything that involves being a human in today’s society and what comes with it. Our ideas of togetherness and how they find themselves disrupted by a self-centered common character.