Last Image

Opening: May 23, 2024, 7 PM
Duration: May 24 – June 29, 2024

With Last Image, Galerie Krinzinger presents the second solo exhibition of Anja Ronacher in its premises at Schottenfeldgasse 45. Displayed are photographs in an old analog photographic technique that the artist has been using in her work for a long time now.

The theme of time, which is inherent to Anja Ronacher’s work, is already hinted at in the title. According to Roland Barthes, time is a fundamental aspect of the medium of photography, as it reproduces and depicts the past irretrievable moment. The artist’s photographs depict artifacts from museums in various locations – objects that have existed for centuries. Detached from their original function in the context of a museum, the photographs offer a different way of perceiving them. According to Ronacher, the aim is to associate the objects with concepts such as rituals, artistry, agnosia, and older forms of knowledge. The artist refers to Georges Bataille, who intensely explored the unknown in human consciousness. In Anja Ronacher’s photographs, single motifs emerge from a dark background, which can be described as this uncertainty, and are defined as specific artifacts by the titles of her works. For example, one piece shows an ostrich egg with incised decoration from Naqada, which dates from the 33rd century BC and now belongs to the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford. Further works portray a jug from the Tang dynasty in the collection of the Museum of East Asian Art in Cologne, or depict one of Giotto’s seven vices, “Invidia”, in the Scrovegni Chapel created from 1304 to 1306. In the process of developing the photographs, Anja Ronacher engages with the image in such a way that the surrounding space of each object is removed and the motifs are framed by a deep black. This thematizes the doubt about science’s need to categorize and rationalize everything without limits. At the same time, the irretrievable past lies in the images. The photographs thematize the aspect of past time that the centuries-old objects carry within them and are at the same time part of the present and current experience. The works are located in a period beyond sequential time, open to perception beyond knowledge.