Over the course of nearly five decades, Bernd and Hilla Becher documented almost every type of industrial architecture – from water towers and steel mills to gas tanks and grain silos – in Europe and the United States. Whether presenting individual photographs or their signature typological grids, the Bechers created a photographic testament to the industrial revolution that shaped the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
At the same time, however, they also captured a much older manufacturing tradition: the quarrying and processing of stone. This volume Streinwerke und Kalkofen is devoted to their photographs of rock-processing plants and lime kilns taken in Germany, France, The Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria and Great Britain throughout the 1980s and 90s.
Each structure is unique, its details dependent upon the region and the date of its construction, and the book features buildings whose essential function is ancient but which remain important today. A number of these images have been included in previous monographs but this is the first publication to showcase a comprehensive collection of the Bechers’ study of stonework structures and lime kilns.
Schirmer/Mosel has been the main publisher for the Becher’s work and this volume adds to over a dozen other titles available. Well printed, the book reflects the open tonal range and detail expected in reproductions of their work. At 232 duotone photographs, this volume adds another substantial and important view into the Becher’s archive.
Steinwerke und Kalkofen