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Review: Beate Geissler and Oliver Sann/Museum of Contemporary Photography

Michigan Avenue, Photography Add comments


A foreclosed home is not a pretty sight after its owners have been dispossessed. At least that is the message of Chicago-based German photographers Beate Geissler and Oliver Sann who have undertaken the task of shooting the interiors of scores of houses that have gone on the block with deadpan straight-on documentary eyes. Geissler and Sann show us gutted rooms and hallways in which there is often some trace of lives left behind, like the remains of a photo-collage of fashion models on a bare wall above an electric plug stuck into a wall socket from which the cord has been severed. As a result of their uncompromising documentary approach, Geissler and Sann evoke neither nostalgia nor a sense of beauty, but simply a realization of what the wear and tear of life do to home sweet home, once the fa├žade is stripped away and we are left with the clump of insulation that has worked its way through a hole in the ceiling. (Michael Weinstein)

Through May 23 at the Museum of Contemporary Photography, 600 S. Michigan.

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