Alexandra Leykauf (born in 1976) studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Nuremberg, Germany and at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. She lives and works in Berlin. Recent solo exhibitions include Caprona (Focal Point Gallery Southend, UK, 2018) Cliché Verre (KM Gallery, Berlin, 2018), Film – Alexandra Leykauf (Cinema 2, Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2016) Selected group exhibitions include Les Rencontres de la photographie (Fotofestival Arles, France, 2016), Dealing with Surfaces (GAK, Bremen, 2015), Bad Thoughts - Collection Martijn and Jeannette Sanders (Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, 2014), Wiederholung (Westfälischer Kunstverein, Münster, 2014), Printed Matter (Manifesta Parallel Program, Museum of Printing, St. Petersburg, RU, 2014), Cimetière d'Ixelles (Art in General, NY, 2013) Entre Deux (Musée régional d'art contemporain Languedoc-Roussillon, France, 2013), Brute! (Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, Harvard University, Cambridge, USA, 2013), based in Berlin (KunstWerke, Berlin, 2011), Geometrie variable (Architectures de Film, Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2011), Rehabilitation (Wiels, Brussels, 2010), Forum Expanded (Berlinale, Berlin, 2010) She has been teaching at various art academies amongst which the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, Harvard University and the University of Arts, Berlin Her latest publication was published by Roma Publishers, Amsterdam in 2016.
The examination of image spaces and my own mental and physical relation to them has been a recurring theme in all my works. I observe the act of looking. Many of my works play with the transition from a three dimensional object to the surface of the image and back to a spatial experience. I examine the multiple implications of changing pictorial conventions and our contemporary mode of viewing, questions of origin, authorship, and our position towards the contradictory truths of images. Be it the carpet, the baroque garden, the movie theater, the museum, the tent, the vitrine, the cabinet or the book, it is the designed interior surrounded by an undefined exterior and the interface between those different spheres that trigger my wish to orientate, to find a sense for vantage point and direction. The conflict between the initial fascination or enchantment I experience when looking at images - a certain inwardness - and a thriving for the sobriety of the overview, the wish to extract myself to a point of view from which I can clearly see artificiality and context motivates my work, but speaking of interiors and my own position within or outside of man-made spaces is also connected to who I am as a female artist. In the proposed lecture I will introduce my work, speak about the way I use photography and about the role photography plays within the wider context of contemporary artistic means.