27 Photos, 50 × 75 cm / 75 × 50 cm
14 Photos, 24 × 16 cm
1 Photo, 252 × 317,5 cm
1 Photo, 280 × 180 cm

Pigment print on Wallpaper, magnets



There is an alternative explanation which cannot be excluded in principle although it is very improbable*


The work EVENTS goes in search of traces in the archive of the Nuclear Physics Institute of the Academy of Sciences of the GDR, Berlin-Zeuthen.

I deal with archive material on the subject of nuclear emulsion, a technique from particle physics that was used until the early 1950s. Photographic material is released into the atmosphere with weather balloons, where particles from cosmic radiation are inscribed as traces in the photo emulsion.


* from: The Study of Elementary Particles by the Photographic Method. Powell at al., 1959

All images © Daniela Friebel / Archive DESY Zeuthen

Exhibition text

by Babette Richter

Daniela Friebel goes on a scientific, aesthetic and private search for traces in the archive of the Nuclear Physics Institute of the Academy of Sciences (GDR, Berlin-Zeuthen in the early 1950s), where her father used to work.

She uses archive images and films, documents the scientific archive material with her camera, and penetrates the microcosm of an archive box. She enlarges, scrutinizes details and thus opens up a mysterious cosmos.
As a photographer, she emphasizes the connection between photography and science in her installation. Here, the scientific process is inextricably linked to analog photography.

Daniela Friebel takes up the technique of nuclear emulsion: Particles of cosmic radiation collide, react and become visible as a direct trace in the photo emulsion. In physics, collisions are called "events". In its original meaning in German, "Ereignis" means an event that occurs before the eyes, that is witnessed (an "Eräugnis"). Accordingly, it is all the more about viewing and visualizing happenings.

Photography was described as a window to reality, an immediate projection that projected the outside inwards and preserved reality as a direct imprint/trace on paper. The photographic apparatus captures space and time, preserving this moment as a document and transforming it into a tangible image that can be viewed. In doing so, photography changes reality, translates and interprets it. Like a magical black box, photography makes the invisible visible.

Friebel raises the question of what really exists or what remains closed to us and what we may overlook. Perception is always also a transformation, interpretation, filtering, veiling and simplification of reality. It shows us the outside world not as such, but as an inner projection. From a physical point of view, existence / reality is an uncertain state, diffuse, meaningless, random, full of inconsistencies, errors and imbalances. Through contemplation, we bind the uncertain and inexplicable into subjective stories and systems of order.