The Swiss-born, Berlin-based duo Taiyo Onorato & Nico Krebs (both b. 1979) respond with humor and wit to various traditions of modernist architecture, documentary photography and the heroic travelogue. By pecking at such constructions, the artists reveal a more whimsical, ironic, and subjective vision of the structures and technologies that shape the way we see and live. Their work simultaneously explores the subject of artistic collaboration, as well as the expansion of photography as an artistic medium. Though much of Onorato & Krebs’ practice is photographic, the artists’ engagement with other media—film, sculpture, sound —sheds the artifice of objectivity and documentation to revel in reconstructions of the world around us.
This is the first major museum exhibition for Onorato and Krebs in the United States, and will collect a variety of eclectic, but interrelated bodies of work. The Great Unreal turns photographs taken on road trips in the U.S. (between 2005 and 2008) into the platform and playground for surreal satire. They returned to this format in 2013 during travels through Central Asia, producing an equally fantastic take on the lived experience of mapmaking. For the Constructions series (2009-2012), the artists photographed Berlin buildings in perspective and extended their contours with strategically placed wooden armatures. Further employing the camera’s eye to suggest alternative ways of seeing, theSpins series turns found materials and extreme camera angles into a psychedelic vision of the everyday.