Sibylle Bergemann (1941–2010) was one of the bestknown East German photographers of the late 20th century. People, especially women, are the central theme of her expressive, sensitive pictures. For more than fifty years, photography remained the great passion of the Berlin-based artist. And a love of travel inspired her to pursue her creativity all over the world: Berlin, Dakar, Moscow, New York, Paris. Fashion and portrait photography combine distinctively in her work with literary reportage and artistic serial documentaries.
Bergemann worked as a freelancer in the GDR with a constant flow of commissions for periodicals devoted to art and culture, such as “Das Magazin”, “Der Sonntag” and the fashion magazine “Sibylle”. She retained her photographic independence after unification: in 1990 she was a founding member of the Berlin photo agency OSTKREUZ. From the 1990s onwards, her clients included “GEO”, “Die Zeit”, “Stern” and the “New York Times Magazine”.
The exhibition at the Berlinische Galerie is the first museum retrospective in the world to feature the career of Sibylle Bergemann. It approaches her unique visual universe on several narrative levels. Over 200 photographs have been chosen from the museum’s own collection and from the photographer’s estate. Selected motifs from her early work will be on show for the first time.
The exhibition has been organised in partnership with the Sibylle Bergemann Estate and funded by the Friends of the Berlinische Galerie.