October 27th - 29th 2017

Exhibitions 2017

Enjoy top-class exhibitions at the gallery of the Hansesaal, the foyer of the theatre, the Bildersaal and around the town park.

Admission is free.

Opening hours
Saturday, 28 October 2017, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sunday, 29 October 2017, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The award ceremony of the GDT European Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2017 will take place on Friday, 27 October 2017 at 6 p.m. Afterwards, the exhibition will be opened officially at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free to both events.

Gallery Hansesaal

Premier exhibitions of the international competitions GDT Wildlife Photographer of the Year and Fritz Pölking Prize / Fritz Pölking Junior Prize 2017.

Theatre foyer

1. Exhibition members' competition GDT Nature Photographer of the Year.

2. Special exhibition 25 Years of International Nature Photography Festival in Lünen

Town park

Outdoor exhibition Best of European Wildlife Photographer


Exhibitions by national and international nature photographers

1. Michael Kenna (US): Photographs from Japan and the Abruzzo mountains
2. Jo-Anne McArthur (US) & Britta Jaschinski (DE/GB): The EU Zoo Enquiry
3. 40 years of Natuurfotografengilde (NFG)
4. Ludmila Espiaube (RU/FR): Huangshan. Inspirational Moments
5. Serge Sorbi (BE): Aegolius – The Ghost of the High Ardennes
6. Orsolya and Erlend Haarberg (HU/NO): Laponia – Majestic stillness
7. Kilian Schönberger (DE): Mythical Germany
8. Biophoto (IT): The ecosystems of the Earth through the beautiful pictures of an international competition

Michael Kenna

Michael Kenna Portrait

Photographs from Japan and the Abruzzo mountains

Michael Kenna captures landscapes: they are his passion. But maybe an even deeper passion is his search for symbolism, moments in which a word, a feeling, the human existence reveals itself in its essence. In nature, trees, above all, carry a lot of symbolism, but mountains, clouds, water surfaces and even the traces left by humans also do. Nature determines what the photographer sees. Michael Kenna's love for Japan has yielded many photographs with a Japanese touch as well as his beautiful book, published in 2015, "Forms of Japan". In 2015 and 2016 he travelled the Abruzzo mountains, where he came across a wild, archaic landscape full of emotions – as are his photographic results. They show the rigours of Nature and her gentleness, and we see how skilfully adaptive people once had been.

About Michael

Kenna’s photographs have been shown in gallery and museum exhibitions throughout the world, and are included in such permanent collections as the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris; the Metropolitan Museum of Photography, Tokyo; the National Gallery, Washington, D.C.; the Shanghai Art Museum; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Born in Widnes, England, in 1953, Kenna currently lives in Seattle, Washington, USA, and continues to photograph throughout the world.

Jo-Anne McArthur & Britta Jaschinski

The EU Zoo Enquiry

Haunting photographs of wildlife kept in zoos and aquaria were unveiled at the European Parliament in Brussels in 2016. Exactly one year later, the GDT festival offers an unparalleled opportunity to see what politicians faced during the debate on standards of zoos in Europe. The wildlife charity “Born Free” launched its thought-provoking exhibition to lay bare the lives that millions of animals kept in European zoos are forced to endure.

Award-winning photographers Jo-Anne McArthur and Britta Jaschinski were commissioned to produce a series of investigative images to be used as evidence in the evaluation of the effectiveness of zoo law (EU Zoo Directive 1999/22). A must-see exhibition.

About Jo-Anne

Jo-Anne McArthur is a photographer and educator based in Toronto, Canada. Through her long-term body of work, “We Animals”, she has been documenting our complex relationship with animals around the globe. Her latest book, “Captive”, looks at individual animals kept in zoos and aquaria. McArthur’s work has appeared in many publications such as National Geographic, The Guardian, The Washington Post, DAYS Japan, Helsingin Sanomat and Der Spiegel. McArthur speaks regularly at schools, universities and photo conferences worldwide on photography, the human-animal relationship and social change.

About Britta

Born and raised in Germany, nature photographer Britta Jaschinski has lived in the UK for many years. Her unique style of photojournalism has won her numerous international awards. Jaschinski is devoted to documenting the fractured existence of wildlife, which suffers in the name of entertainment, status, greed and superstition. Her stories investigate the relationship we have with animals, and highlights what we risk to lose. Her photos are troubling, unsettling, sometimes brutal and yet beautiful. Her latest series is CRIMES, examining the question “Wildlife or Commodity”? Jaschinski’s work has been published and exhibited worldwide, with more than 25 solo shows, and is highly collectable, selling through contemporary art galleries.

40 years of Natuurfotografengilde (NGF)

NFG Logo
The Natuurfotografengilde was founded in January 1977 and is one of the oldest associations of nature photographers in the Netherlands. It was created as a point of contact for nature enthusiasts who wished to take responsibility for their photographic work. It was important to support nature photography in accordance with generally established standards of nature conservation. This is reflected in a collection of guidelines, to which each member of the NGF has to adhere. The NFG expects its members to support Nature's cause and to maintain photographic quality based on natural history knowledge, aesthetics and technique as well as on personal points of view. As of 2017, the association counts 39 members, including three honour members and three guest members. This exhibition shows photographs by some of these.

Orsolya und Erlend Haarberg

Laponia – Majestic stillness

During the last four years, Orsolya and Erlend Haarberg have spent more than seven months in the wilderness of the Laponia World Heritage Site in Sweden. The project, which started with a National Geographic magazine assignment in 2013, has grown into an ambitious plan to self-publish a book about Scandinavia's largest, wildest and least accessible cluster of protected areas, Laponia. During their extended hiking, skiing and canoeing trips across untamed nature, Laponia has become a sanctuary for both Orsolya and Erlend – a place where they find inner peace in today's fast accelerating world. In their exhibition, they present photographs of quiet moments that they experienced in Laponia's wild landscapes: the serene beauty of the mountains, the silent forests and the subtle harmony of patterns and colours in the wetlands.

About Erlend and Orsolya
Erlend and Orsolya have worked together on several long-term projects in the Nordic countries. They spent ten months in Iceland photographing the contrasts in the ever changing volcanic landscape in the North Atlantic. This was followed by a project in Norway where they explored the coast from the most weather-exposed coastlines to the most sheltered fjords. In recent years, they have travelled for many months in Laponia to convey large and small outdoor experiences with their cameras. A selection of pictures from these projects has been published in the National Geographic magazine in both the US and international editions. They also received a number of awards in the most renowned international competitions. Thus far, their photographic work has resulted in four books: Lapland—Alaska of Europe, Iceland—Land of Contrasts, Iceland in all its Splendour and Laponia—Majestic Stillness.

Ludmila Espiaube

Ludmila Espiaube Portrait

Huangshan. Inspirational Moments.

Huangshan, Yellow Mountains, Celestial Mounts ... Ludmilla says: “From times immemorial, millions climbed up its abrupt slopes, its steep and sometimes very narrow stairs. Thousands of poems have been written. Thousands of pictures have been painted. Hundreds of millions of photos have been taken. For a long time, I believed these were unreal landscapes, derived from the exuberant imagination of bygone painters. Then, I discovered the work of Mark Riboud, Wang Wusheng, Michael Kenna and Art Wolf. The dream to see these mountains was born and became an obsession. Four trips at different times, almost three months to explore this legendary massif, head in clouds, eyes wide open in wonder in the face of so much beauty and magic. It is a unique place, an unforgettable pilgrimage ...”.

About Ludmila

Born in Azerbaijan, an ex-republic of the former Soviet Union, she now lives in France. Stays abroad and travel enabled her to discover the extraordinary nature of other countries, cultures and life styles, awakening a passion for photography. However, purely documentary photography does not interest her. She aims for an aestheticism, a harmony, a certain style which reflects her interpretation of an atmosphere, her personal subjective outlook on beauty and elegance, which is strongly influenced by the ancient arts of engraving and calligraphy.

Serge Sorbi

Serge Sorbi Portrait

Aegolius – The Ghost of the High Ardennes

Inhabiting deep spruce forests, the Tengmalm’s owl (Aegolius funereus) is an extremely elusive species, revealed only by its ocarina-like singing. For nearly 30 years, Serge Sorbi has been protecting and monitoring Tengmalm’s owls in the vast forests of the Ardennes mountain range (Belgium). Protection activities include the conservation of suitable nesting trees and installation of nest boxes as well as census, monitoring breeding success, ringing, a radio-tracking program, and DNA analysis. Thousands of hours spent in the field, day and night, presented Serge with the opportunity to share this elusive bird’s beauty and to develop an artistic relationship expressed in his photography. Pygmy owls arrived in the same area of Belgium as a new species a few years ago, but currently, there are only a few breeding cases. Serge also monitors and photographs this small population of new inhabitants.

About Serge

Serge has enjoyed being outside since his early childhood. A more specific love for wildlife came through birdwatching at school at the age of 14. Soon afterwards, the wish emerged to capture the birds on film and to keep an account of the adventures in the wild. Later, this passion brought Serge to all corners of the world, increasing his love for wildlife and photography even further. Today, Serge concentrates his ornithological skills on the study and protection of Tengmalm’s owls in Belgium, with some of the data collected published in scientific papers. Serge is also involved in nature protection in Belgium as a member of the board of Natagora, the main nature conservation association in the French-speaking part of Belgium. Ornithology became his full-time job as he became the head of the bird strike prevention team of the Belgian Air Force. Since 2006, Serge has been one of the main organisers of the Namur Wildlife Picture Festival (see www.exposaves.be). Serge also guides nature/photography tours in several countries of the world.

Kilian Schönberger

Kilian Schoenberger Portrait

Mythical Germany

Not only the Brothers Grimm made Germany a land of fairy tales and myths. In the old days, people used myths to explain the existence of landscapes that they otherwise could not understand. Depending on the region, the subjects vary a lot. In the north of the country, tales are dominated by bogs and megalithic tombs; in the centre, it is rock formations and ruins, while in the alpine region whole mountains like the Watzmann turn into mythological characters. Kilian Schönberger went out to capture landscapes that still hold the magic of the ancient tales. In his search, he explored well-known subjects with his camera, and also found many hidden gems.

about Kilian

Kilian Schönberger is a graduate geographer engaging in freelance landscape photography since 2013. Born in 1985 in Tännesberg in Upper Palatinate, this natural region at the Bavarian-Czech border still influences his photographic work. Based in Cologne, he works mainly in Germany and Central Europe. The coffee table books "Sagenhaftes Deutschland" (2015) and "Sehnsucht Wald" (2016, with Andreas Kieling) made him a specialist on known and unknown landscapes in the heart of Europe. He wants his images to be not only nature documents but spaces that come visually alive. His photographs have been showcased regularly in exhibitions and published in magazines like GEO and Stern.


BioPhotoContest 2017 Logo

The ecosystems of the Earth through the beautiful pictures of an international competition

BioPhotoContest is a rather unusual competition in nature photography: every year, the theme changes, focusing on a different habitat of our planet. After all, large ecosystems are the giant pieces of a mosaic of habitats that form the basis and shape the diversity of life. The competition aims to involve photographers in the distribution of environmental knowledge and the conservation of the beauty of Nature.

The 2017 theme was “boreal forests”. The images are divided in six categories:

Landscape, Mammals, Birds, Other Animals, Plants and Flowers and Compositions and Shapes. Working for three days with images from over 20 countries, the jury evaluated the accuracy of composition and technique, but also and above all their value for nature photography. The three winning images are (in alphabetical order): Guillaume Bily (France), Erlend Haarberg (Norway), Dag Rottereng (Norway), Three other awards were given to: Miguel Angel Arts (Spain), Orsolya Haarberg (Hungary) and Sven Zacek (Estonia).