With this photographic exhibition we have the opportunity to celebrate a nearly forgotten photographer: Marsha Burns. The only US-American photographer invited to give a lecture to the Werkstatt für Photographie at the Volkshochschule in Kreuzberg in 1984, here in Berlin her work was exhibited at the Amerika-Haus. Burns‘ photographs primarily engage in a dialogue with classical portraiture. While in Europe, she focused on taking numerous staged portraits of young people with her large-format camera.
Marsha Burns was born in 1945 in Seattle, Washington. Between 1963–65 she studied painting at the University of Washington and at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Her first experiences with photography came from a course in photo journalism she took in Seattle in 1963. And yet it would take another six years before she decided to dedicate herself fully to the medium of photography as her primary means of artistic expression. Today her work can be found in institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Stedelijk Museum, the Centre Pompidou, the Center for Creative Photography at the University of Arizona, the Seattle Art Museum, and in many collections.
photos © Gerhard Haug