Gundula Friese


Gundula Friese studied photography at the Academy of Visual Arts in Leipzig as well as Sound and Video design at the Berlin Academy of Digital Media. Her work has been shown in numerous international exhibitions. Gundula Friese was drawn to photography early in life. A portrait showing a young boy led to a key moment: He was around eleven years old, the same age as I was then. He stood in the midst of a bleak cityscape, serenely looking into the camera. The image both confused and calmed me, in equal measure. It was a condition of inner agitation. I felt seen and recognized. But wasn’t it I who was looking, gazing at a young boy in a picture? I remembered then that I wanted to take photographs. From 1999 to 2001 Gundula Friese worked as a photographer for the State Office of Criminal Investigation in Berlin. She spent two years documenting crime scenes, postmortems, in- juries, perpetrators and victims. She learnt that pictures are not only taken with the camera but are absorbed by the photographer also – an experience that has influenced her world view ever since. Friese’s portraits of people and places, which take the form of single images as well as series, pho- tographic cycles and videos, are the result of her cautious approach to and persistent observation of the world. She makes connections and interrelations visible so that she and we who look at her work are part of it.

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