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The Met | Virtual Opening—Bernd & Hilla Becher
July 28 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Join Met curator Jeff Rosenheim for a virtual tour of Bernd & Hilla Becher, a retrospective celebrating the renowned German artists, Bernd and Hilla Becher (1931–2007; 1934–2015), who changed the course of late 20th-century photography.
Working as a rare artist couple, they focused on a single subject: the disappearing industrial architecture of Western Europe and North America that fueled the modern era.
Their seemingly objective style recalled 19th- and early 20th-century precedents but also resonated with the serial approach of contemporary Minimalism and Conceptual art.
Equally significant, it challenged the perceived gap between documentary and fine-art photography. Using a large-format view camera, the Bechers methodically recorded blast furnaces, winding towers, grain silos, cooling towers, and gas tanks with precision, elegance, and passion. Their rigorous, standardized practice allowed for comparative analyses of structures that they exhibited in grids of between four and thirty photographs. They described these formal arrangements as “typologies” and the buildings themselves as “anonymous sculpture.”
Bernd & Hilla Becher is on view at The Met from July 15 – November 6, 2022.
Learn more: met.org/MetBecher