Cologne: Heidi Reckermann Photographie
Katharina Bosse: New Burlesque
14 September – 20 October 2002
In her current exhibition at Heidi Reckermann Photographie in Cologne, Katharina Bosse presents us with New Burlesque, a series of curiously alluring portraits of burlesque dancers in costumes of kitsch and bourgeois ornamentation. Born in Finland and raised in Germany, Bosse has lived in New York since 1997, where she has worked not only as an artist, but also as a commercial photographer for magazines as diverse as The New Yorker, Spin, Detour, Der Spiegel and The New York Times Magazine.
In May 2001, Bosse travelled to a burlesque festival in
New Orleans, where she made numerous portraits of the uncanny performers.
And although she typically presents this bizarre side of American life, her
sitters are always treated with the utmost respect. We don’t laugh at the
women, but are rather quite intrigued by their strange and enchanting
existence. Bosse is not interested in documentation, but rather in the
psychological backgrounds of her sitters, the way the women re-invent
themselves for the stage and live out their fantasies. Their stage names
alone tell us volumes about who they pretend to be, if only on the stage:
from Babe Bijoux and Stella Starr to Candy Whiplash, Kitten DeVille and even
Gérard A. Goodrow