Bernd and Hilla Becher


Bernd and Hilla Becher are a well-known German couple of photographers, famous for their black and white photographs of timber frame constructions and industrial buildings. Together they also founded a school of photography in Düsseldorf. From a very young age Bernd and Hilla have been highly interested in photography and creative arts. Hilla became a trained photographer and Bernd studied Painting as well as typography.

The couples’s technique is characterized by central perspectives, freedom from distortion, desertion and soft sunlight. Their photos seem to lack emotion, are dreary, cold and distanced – and this is exactly what the couple gained global attention for. They demonstrated their photos in various exhibitions and published multiple photo books. “We started off because of pure love for photos” Hilla Becher said in 2005.

Bernd and Hilla Becher received various awards for their life’s work – starting from the Biennales Golden Lion to the Goslar Kaisserring Award.

Their mission is to document industrial buildings that are characteristically for their era. They concentrated on manufacturing plants and those industrial buildings that have been linked to the production of goods. Characteristic for their way of working was that they produced 6, 9, 12 or more photos of the same object in predefined differing angles. This is how the “typologies” of industrial buildings came to be.

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Pitheads 1974 by Bernd Becher and Hilla Becher 1931-2007, 1934-2015

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If you are interested in listening to a short interview Hilla Becher gave in the year 2010 – check out this link.

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