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Lourdes, 2012

Hans-Jürgen Raabe

Born: 1952

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Hans Jürgen Rabe, born in 1952, is a German expat who has been living and working – as a journalist, publisher and manager - abroad for many years. A student of the famous theatre photographer Haendler-Krah, Kiel, Raabe, dedicated himself to the 990 Faces Project after a nearly 30-year break from photography and as a continuation of his previous book publications and exhibitions (e.g. Berlin Graffiti, 1982). Raabes passion and his photography is about ‘reality‘ – capturing life as it is, without the use of props, artificial lighting or photoshopping. His photographs are images of split second experience captured on the spur of the moment, without any artifice, posing, make up – they are direct, unadorned snapshots of real people and real life – and at the same time brim with poetry.

Art objects of this artist

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 43, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 43, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 46, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 46, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 48, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 48, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 36, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 36, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 37, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 37, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 39, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Faces 39, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Still 12, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ Still 12, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ still 13, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ still 13, 2012

Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ stills 18, 2012
Raabe, Hans-Jürgen ◊ stills 18, 2012


Hans-Jürgen Raabes mission is to pick up where our attention often falters and fails us. Where we become blind to the realities of other people as we move through life with our eyes firmly shut. Training his lens on people, without pretence and with the simple intent to reveal and capture what is, his photographs are masterful still lifes – to borrow from the expression used by the German media scientist Norbert Bolz. Their power not only lies in their ability to penetrate our rampant apathy, but also in the fact that their simplistic beauty effectively cuts through our perceived need for visual business and action.
When choosing the stages for his photographic studies, Raabe purposely selects places that are both formal and special in character. Whether Myanmar, Lourdes or the October festival, Marrakech or Fifth Avenue – vanishing points of Raabes work are formed by carefully chosen places that represent exceptions to the norm, that have about them that special air of normality or, vice verse, mundane air of being special. The Project is a photographic record of thirty-three visits to these places that aims to capture their magic without making these places themselves an object of contemplation – but simply designating them the ‘stage` on which human live is played out, in all its mundaneness, uniqueness, normality and individuality.
Thirty-three places. Thirty photographs of people per place. Making a total of “990 Faces” – or ‚the Project – and the adventure of what it means to be human.
In focus gallery starts this project by exhibitiong the series "Lourdes".

BiographyBibliographyArt objects

Current and past exhibition-dates and information
Nov 10th, 2012
Hans-Jürgen Raabe . 990 Faces - "Lourdes"
Jan 11th, 2020
Vernissage 30 years in focus Gallery, Cologne


Books to the project 990faces are published by Meralon Internation Ltd., Ilford, Essex, England – all Hardcover, in color, 40,5 x 33,5 cm, 40 plates, 89,- Euro, with a introduction from Hans-Michael Koetzle in 8 languages. All books are available in in focus galerie burkhard arnold, Köln, and in the galerie photo edition berlin, Berlin/Baden-Baden, . Published in 2012: Faces 01-30, Myanmar + Faces 31-60, Lourdes + Faces 61 – 90, Oktoberfest. In progress: Faces 91-120, Marrakesch + Faces121-150, 5th avenue + Faces 151-180, Documenta (13).

BiographyBibliographyArt objects

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