Laura J. Padgett, Strata

20 January — 16 March 2024

In her artistic practice, Laura J. Padgett reveals the historical layers beneath the outer crust of the present. Her new work, which she made during the last two years at the Poelzig-Bau in Frankfurt, sheds light on the complex background of the building. Architectural and industrial history, collusion  with National Socialism, post WWII history under the American military administration, and most recently becoming home to the J.W. Goethe University since 2001 manifest themselves in significant overlays. Further, Padgett has identified another area of memory within the building: the university collections are evidence of our cultural history and the ongoing metamorphosis how we perceive it.

“What I look for now are places that resonate with history, that are, in a way, unmarked landmarks, and to make this history visible and palpable. Because our past is ours forever.“ Laura J. Padgett

The exhibition will be accompanied by a publication with photographs by Laura J. Padgett an essay by Katharina J. Cichosch.

Laura J. Padgett (b. 1958 in Cambridge, USA) received her BFA in painting from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York. She continued her studies in film and photography at the Städelschule from 1983 to1985 and received her MA in Art History and Aesthetics in 1994 from the Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe University, both in Frankfurt am Main.
Since the 1990s Laura J. Padgett has produced a complex body of work. She exhibits widely, while also participating in international film festivals and screenings.
In addition to her exhibiting activities, the artist regularly writes on film, art and aesthetic theory. Since 1990 she has taught and lectured at various universities in Germany and abroad.
Her work is held in various major public and private collections, including Städel Museum, Graphic Collection, Frankfurt am Main, Huis Marseille, Museum for Photography, Amsterdam, DZ BANK Art Collection, Frankfurt am Main, Museum of Modern Art, Museion, Bozen, The Sir John Soane's Museum, London, Jewish Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Schloss Wilhelmshöhe, Hessen Kassel Heritage, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg, Deutsche Bank Collection, Museum Wiesbaden, as well as other institutions.
Laura J. Padgett lives and works in Frankfurt am Main.