Sex in the City Bettina Rheims in Berlin
Even after the Film Festival, Berlin is still gleaming in international glamour. On March 7, Parisian photographer Bettina Rheims (for many, ever since Helmut Newton’s death the authority on female nude photography) will open her exhibition Can You Find Happiness at Galerie C/O Berlin. There, a total of 95 photographs from eight series will be on display until May 11; they include works from Chambre Close (1991), in which Parisian women pose in hotel rooms for an imaginary voyeur, and Shanghai (2004), exploring everyday life in China’s glittering gateway to the world. Three of the series exhibited will be having their world premiere.
© Bettina Rheims – Courtesy Galerie C/O Berlin
The catalogue will be published at Schirmer/Mosel
With their opulent colors, immaculate classical compositions, perfect lines, and masterful treatment of the theme, Bettina Rheims’ erotic stories at times quote icons of art or cultural history, and are firmly rooted in the tradition of panel painting—or they orchestrate and mock stereotypes of the billboards and silver screen.
© Bettina Rheims, from Can you find happiness, Courtesy Schirmer/Mosel Verlag
“Naked skin is like an empty page on which no one has yet written. When models come to me they shed everything: Their cloths, origins, and biography, their good or their bad taste,” Bettina Rheims comments, and goes on to emphasize: “In my pictures, sexuality is linked to pleasure and not to pain, as is so often the case in art.”
Can You Find Happiness: as for Bettina Rheims’ erotic pictures, not just beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but perhaps there’s happiness in beholding these images. After all, there are no strings attached, no limits set to even the wildest fantasies.
Bettina Rheims’ models know exactly what they want: They are young, saucy, spacy, and egotistic women. They enjoy presenting their own playful relationship to sexuality to the camera. When posing they shy away from neither shocking nor provoking. They act sensually and lasciviously as artworks of nature.
Can you find Happiness
With an essay by Philippe Dagen
128 pages - 22 x 27 cm
94 color and duotone plates
Featuring highly praised and fiercely disputed series such as Chambre close (women posing for an imaginary voyeur); KIM (a documentary on a transsexual); I.N.R.I. (a sequence on the life of Christ) ; women in modern Shanghai, and Héroïnes
© Bettina Rheims / Schirmer-Mosel Verlag - Courtesy of Schirmer-Mosel Verlag.
Other Posts about Bettina Rheims
Upcoming : Bibliothèque nationale de France exhibition, 2010
Updated : April 2010