- Digital Formats
Black-and-white photograph, silver gelatin print
26 x 38.5 cm
A street lost in fog. Here and there people walk on the wide pavements. An advertising sign hangs on a façade eaten away by time: 'Werner Wendt, Hat Shapes Model Making, Ground-Floor'. Parked on the street, one after another, almost always the same car model. A pigeon flies into the grey nothingness.
The calm gaze with which Helga Paris captured her neighbourhood in Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin, is characteristic of her photographs. They have a simple poetry that lets the viewer feel the familiarity and social empathy with which Paris shows everyday life in the GDR. Her interest and affection belong to the proletarian milieu of the big city.
Paris is a self-taught photographer and first took pictures of her children, then family, friends and neighbours. Coming from a working-class family, she possesses the ability to get close to the people around her, in the corner bars and in the streets. During these encounters, her camera is often invisible to the people photographed. Her friend the poet Elke Erb calls the look with which Paris meets people 'cradle honesty'.
The monographic ifa exhibition Helga Paris has been on tour since 2012. It displays the artist's photographic work created between 1968 and 2011.