Shadowplay: Film stills from the collection of the Austrian Film Museum

Galerie Wolfrum, October 21 to November 22, 2010
The exhibition Shadowplay presents a selection from the massive photographic holdings of the Austrian Film Museum. It is the first public presentation of original artefacts from this collection which, in its totality, comprises more than 350,000 stills. The exhibition focuses on the use of shadow as a stylistic means of expression in film promotion photography. It includes work by renowned photographers such as Clarence Sinclair Bull, Ruth Harriet Louise, Raymond Voinquel and the Viennese Atelier Manassé, as well as images from anonymous artists. Shadowplay also reveals a cross-section of the various genres and eras of film history, from 1920s German Expressionism through classic Hollywood Studio filmmaking and Film noir to the auteur cinema of the French New Wave. Both iconic and little-known vintage prints will be presented.
A particular focus of the exhibition is the “inter-medium” aspect of film stills: they represent a visual interface between film and photography, between moving and static images. This paradoxical status of motion picture still photography is reflected in the motif of the shadow: its ephemeral yet noticeable presence is a testament to the ambivalence of the visible. The exhibition explores this ‘world in between’. 
Shadowplay is being presented in conjunction with the Vienna Month of Photography at Galerie Wolfrum right across from the Film Museum: Palais Lobkowitz, Augustinerstrasse 10, Vienna 1010. The exhibition opens on October 21 at 6 p.m. and continues until November 22 (Mon-Fri 10-6, Sat 10-5).