Basic Forms by Bernd & Hilla Becher



For nearly four decades this renowned German husband-and-wife team of photographers has been paying tribute to the industrial landscape. Their work ranks internationally among the most significant achievements in the field of industrial photography. The 64 images in this collection comprise a typical cross-section of the Bechers' work. Captured in stark black and white, the structures here -- American and European grain elevators, gas tanks, blast furnaces, water towers -- are impeccably presented in square, frontal images which highlight their architectural complexities as well as their otherworldly presence upon a vast horizontal landscape. Making no attempts to glamorize their subjects, and offering no visual commentary, the Bechers nevertheless manage to capture the eerily beautiful austerity of these familiar structures. Their unadorned approach which portrays leaden skies and excludes any organic presence, enables viewers to study and appreciate the endless variations of industrial architecture, structures which although an integral part of the world's landscape, are often overlooked.

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