Duo exhibition of Jamie Baldridge and Bernhard Buhmann at Carbon 12
Text by Albert Allgaier
Carbon 12 proudly presents "Versus", an exhibition of new works by Jamie Baldridge and Bernhard Buhmann. Buhmann returns to Dubai after a brilliant first solo exhibition at Carbon 12, in 2009 and it is Baldridge first "solo" in the Middle East.
It's the golden age of struggle: occupy everything; lex talionis; welcoming to the jungle. Acceleration and demise go hand in hand; the hamster's wheel leaves no room for imagination and introspection.
This is what we need and this is what they do. Baldridge's meticulously composed images assembled from hundreds of digital photographs. "Existing in a state of quivering potentia, swirling somewhere in a sparkling electric reservoir, waiting to be brought into the light of day", the very personal darkroom of one's unconscious abyss.
Buhmann's magnum opus sucks the viewer directly into a narration, full of marvel and wonder, a parallel universe, an alternative reality, full of buskers and jesters, where rivers flow upstream and clocks go backwards, the irrational, the unexplainable. A place "where not only time is out of joint".
Baldridge's and Buhmann's contemplative, at first glance almost unearthly approach to their respective media is very investigative, in subject and form alike. Their struggle is universal, their matters ubiquitous; the artist as the alchemist or the artist as a prophet.
Baldridge and Buhmann oeuvres are deeply rooted within art history. Hieronymus Bosch, as a very early example, where overall composition and detail are in constant dialogue, not only reflecting world views and belief systems, but deconstructing and reconstructing the semantics themselves. Inner urge as their impulse, friction as their motif. Fighting against, fighting with, fighting for. This is VERSUS.
Jamie Baldridge, born in 1975 in Louisiana, is a professor of photography at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, USA.
Bernhard Buhmann, born in 1979 in Bregenz, Austria, is the winner of the STRABAG Art Award 2008.