Having migrated from the Netherlands while still a teenager, Ingeborg Tyssen began exhibiting in 1975 with intensely observational photographs of urban space. Generally at a remove, Tyssen’s images place people in stark isolation within their environment. Figures splintered between angular architecture and harsh contrasts of light and shadow in her ‘People’ series evoke alienation. This sense is made directly and metaphorically palpable in ‘Untitled’ 1975, which depicts a newborn encased in an incubator. Initially trained as a nurse and a midwife, Tyssen also photographed with a deep empathy towards the peculiarities of place and culture. As critic Blair French has noted, ‘the fascinating “strangeness” of vision in Tyssen's work suggests an authorial consciousness formed, in part, elsewhere and constantly seeking to rearticulate itself within a different world.’1 Her oeuvre reflects on the difficulty of communication, while probing the expressive potential of photography as a site for critical engagement.
1) Blair French, ‘Ingeborg Tyssen 1945-2002’ in 'Photofile’, no 68, April 2003, p 64
gelatin silver photograph
14.7 x 22.0 cm image; 30.4 x 37.9 cm sheet
Signature & date
Signed l.r.verso, pencil "Ingeborg Tyssen". Not dated.
Anonymous gift 2012
Not on display
© Ingeborg Tyssen. Licensed by Viscopy, Sydney