Mara Hoberman, “Annick Ligtermoet,” Artforum (Picks), August 2009
The gallery is pleased to announce the New York solo debut of Dutch photographer Annick Ligtermoet.
In “De Verontrustende Wereld” (The Uncanny World), institutional grey boxes protrude from the wall containing small photographs, collected trinkets such as personal diaries, letters and vanity mirrors. In general, these items do not signify “fine art”, but the personal, the used, mementos one carries and inevitably “collects” by simply living in the world. Indeed, Ligtermoet’s work can feel “authorless” in that her images and objects evoke the feeling of something you have seen or encountered before. Yet, understanding where or when that might have been is where her work confounds. One is always befuddled when encountering the uncanny, locating the origin of one’s memory the work of a lifetime.
Along with the boxes, photographs are scattered on the gallery walls. Several pictures of children, a modern looking piece of architecture seemingly plopped in a field, another of what appears to be several drowning animals in turbulent waters. Each seemingly disparate picture is allotted its own position within the gallery. Some are simply pinned on the wall; others are inset into it, each one demanding a distinct encounter from the viewer thus heightening their impact. Understanding the affect of these images may not be possible, yet in Ligtermoet’s “Uncanny World”, the work quietly threatens the viewer, asking them to understand why and how these images are so calmly violent, and why it seems so disturbingly natural for the images to appear as they do.
Annick Ligtermoet (b. 1983, Putten, The Netherlands) lives and works in Amsterdam. She received a BA from the Royal Academy of Visual Arts, The Hague, The Netherlands. Her work has been included in group exhibitions at KABK, Fotomuseum, Nuthuis, TodaysArt, and Filmhuis, The Hague; Plantagedok, Amsterdam; and Berline Messe, Berlin, Germany. De Versontrustende Wereld is the artist’s first New York solo exhibition.