Geert Goiris (°1971) is interested in capturing those places and moments where our sense of reality becomes uncertain. His images present us a strangely familiar world, at the same time convincingly real and unfathomably fantastic. Often, he puts up his camera in far flung places or tries to capture odd meteorological phenomena, but even when he stays close at home, he always looks for the unknown in the known. The strange, uncanny effect of his images, however, can not entirely be explained by his predilection for eccentric topics; it as much the result of the way he uses the photographic apparatus. He predominantly uses a large format camera, equipped with special film (orthochromatic, aerial or infrared). His preferred moment of shooting is during the twilight hours, when dusk sets in and the light starts to become unreliable. His working method is based on a mixture of preparation and chance: the large format camera requires precise handling, but during the long exposure times anything can happen and how the film will translate the subject into an image remains somewhat unpredictable. The camera is never a mere conduit through which we, humans, can connect visually with the world out there, but a tool to explore the difference between our ‘experience’ of it and truly ‘seeing’ it for what it is. Together with Jean Baudrillard, Goiris seems to understand that the camera is on the side of the world, giving us a glimpse of what it looks like stripped from any human projection or interference. Photography gives us the world as an alien body. Here, the sublime arises not from the terrifying grandeur of the site or through the looming disaster that we seem to discern in the silent landscape. It is a result of the distinct feeling of being shut out of any reasonable connection to the world.
His work is present, among others, in the following collections: Seattle Art Museum, Seattle; Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg; Museum of photography, Antwerp; Centro de Arte Caja de Burgos, Spain; Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; Centre National des Arts Plastiques, Paris; Direction des Affaires culturelles de la Ville de Paris.
Exhibitions include : Word Without Us, Biennale de la photographie de Mulhouse, Caserne des pompiers, Hombourg/FR (public space)(2020); Silent Earth, Deutsche Börse AG, The Cube, Eschborn/DE (2020); World Without Us, Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Anvers/BE (2018); Plot Twist, Art : Concept, Paris /FR (2016); Geert Goiris, Musée de Bagnes, Bagnes/CH (curators : Jean-Paul Felley & Olivier Kaeser) (2014); Geert Goiris, M – Museum, Leuven/BE (2013); Le Silence. Une fiction, Villa Paloma, Nouveau Musée National de Monaco (curator: Simone Menegoi) (2012); The eye is a lonely hunter: images of humankind, The 4th edition of the Fotofestival Mannheim – Wilhelm Hack Museum , Ludwigshafen/DE (2011); Whiteout and other stories, Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg/DE (2010); Fresh Hell, Carte Blanche à Adam McEwen, Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2010).