Ulla von Brandenburg

The Paris-based artist Ulla von Brandenburg (*1974) works at the interface between visual arts and theatre and has developed a complex and characteristic oeuvre to this day. In her films, drawings, performances and installations she uses methods and procedures of theatre and deals with social, societal and historical issues. The focus of her work is usually on films, which she integrates into large-scale fabric installations and architectures. With major solo exhibitions like currently at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris as well as participations in numerous international group exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale (2009) or the Sydney Biennale (2014), Ulla von Brandenburg is one of the internationally renowned, discourse-shaping positions of her generation.
"From as early as 2004, Ulla von Brandenburg has been working with quilts that are sewn together using the patchwork method from different fabrics – usually old items of clothing, curtains or tablecloths with different patterns and sur- face structures. (...) Sewing – as well as weaving, embroidery, knitting and lace-making – is a very versatile craft. In addition to surface finishes, such as rough and smooth, dull and shiny, hard and soft, these activities also include colour and, as a result of their structure, texture as the dominant element. (…) Patchwork quilts have been handed down from generation to generation, have traditionally been part of an inheritance, and have become a kind of map of family history and of individual origin and identity. (...) The quilts also refer to political and social phenomena in US history. Among the most popular patchwork patterns and sewing techniques are those such as ‘The Wagon Wheel’, ‘The Log Cabin’ and ‘Drunkard’s Path’, after which von Brandenburg has named her quilts. The names of the patterns refer to experiences of landscape, travel, cartography, migration, topography and rootedness – all of which are important aspects in the history of nation building in North America. In the era of slavery and the ‘underground railroad’ – the secret network of people who helped slaves to escape – quilts also played an important role. Patterns, signs and colour were used as secret codes to direct slaves to Canada, where freedom awaited them. These patterns are ancient and are still passed down from generation to generation today." Excerpt from: Max Rauschenbach in Ulla von Brandenburg, Sweet Quilts Sun Works, published on the occasion of the exhibitions at Whitechapel Gallery, London and Kunstmuseum Bonn, 2018


Ulla von Brandenburg Le milieu est bleu 2020 Super 16 mm film transferred on HD video. color, sound 23:43 min from Produzentengalerie Hamburg on Vimeo.


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