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What’s Up Down South with Bill Ferris: Gesche Würfel

March 5, 2014 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

GescheGesche Würfel: New Works

Join us for a light lunch and discussion with German visual artist Gesche Würfel led by Bill Ferris in the Love House & Hutchins Forum at 11:00. Please RSVP to

Würfel’s practice combines a wide range of influences: from her background as an urban planner and sociologist to having lived in various countries. In her work she investigates the relationship humans have with their environment in urban places as well as cultural and natural landscapes. Her photos engage with the socio-political implications of spatial processes by exploring notions of class, gender, race, and geography. She is particularly drawn to unusual, derelict, mundane, and often overlooked spaces as these offer a vast area of hidden (local) histories. By doing this Würfel offers viewers insights about spaces they may never visit or simply do not notice.

The photography project “Basement Sanctuaries” explores how superintendents decorate the basements of apartment buildings in New York City by illuminating the process of migrant adaptation to the metropolis from an intimate perspective.  “Basement Sanctuaries” will be published by Schilt Publishing in spring 2014.

Two of her recent projects investigate how to bring to light the dark shadows of America’s slavery past in the present condition. “At the Hands of Persons Unknown” investigates lynchings of African American women in the South.  The work evokes the perspective of the victims and the memories embodied in the trees.  In an intervention on the former Hargraves Plantation in Chapel Hill she is interested in representing how the past is buried in the present.

View some of Würfel’s recent work here.


Gesche Würfel received her Diploma in Urban Planning from the University of Dortmund, Germany, and her M.A. in Photography and Urban Cultures from Goldsmiths, University of London. She is currently based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, where she is an MFA candidate in UNC’s Studio Art program.

Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally. In 2007, Würfel was selected as one of the Bloomberg New Contemporaries. Some of her recent exhibitions include solo shows at the New York Public Library and Field Projects; Wolk Gallery, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); Civilian Art Projects, Washington, DC; and Goldsmiths, University of London. She has a solo show coming up at Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, OR in September 2014.

Her work was published in the New York Times, WIRED, Foto8, Cahier Fotografie, Younger than Jesus, Art Actuel, StadtBauwelt, ARTCO and many other outlets, and was presented on WNYC-NPR. Her first monograph, Basement Sanctuaries, will be published by Schilt Publishing in Spring 2014.

Among others, Gesche has worked as a Research Associate at the Centre for Urban and Community Reseach (CUCR) at Goldsmiths, University of London and taught photography classes at Westchester Community College (SUNY) and the New York Botanical Garden.


March 5, 2014
11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Event Category:


Center for the Study of the American South @ the Love House & Hutchins Forum
410 E. Franklin St
Chapel Hill, 27514 United States