MA Graduate of Zurich University of the Arts
Visiting Period: 4 January – 5 March 2019
Romain Mader studies fine arts at ZHdK and studied photography at ECAL. He is a Swiss artist who explores themes of gender-representation, loneliness and human behaviour in a connected world. His work has been exhibited at Tate Modern, London, Musée d‘art de Pully, Images in Vevey, and published in 2016 in a monograph titled Ekaterinaby Mörel Books in London. Mader’s work was the recipient of the 2017 Paul Huf Award.
Romain Mader’s work Ekaterinaappears to document tourism in Ukraine, through the artist’s construction of a narrative in which he seeks a bride in the imaginary city of Ekaterina. The real issue of this speculative trade in spouses underpins a photographic and filmic project which seems to ‘document’ its subject, but which also, through the presence of the artist as a subject of the work, manages also to expose the performative aspect of investigative projects of this kind. Mader’s embodiment of the role of western bachelor searching for a Ukrainian bride engages with a whole series of obvious stereotypes about such potentially exploitative situations. What is most significant about the work, beyond the final balanced performance of its author, is that it is delivered in a photographic language that duplicates perfectly, almost uncannily, the conventions of contemporary documentary practice.
The strong performative aspect, which can be seen in Maders photographic and video works, gets renewed in his most recent works.
Click here to learn more about Romain Mader.