Archives in the Foundation

"Don't let the picture archives die after all!" wrote Kurt Zentner in his appeal for the preservation of photographic archives in the Stuttgarter Zeitung in May 1956. But like a number of other welcome initiatives since then, his appeal went unheard.

Today, photography is undergoing a far-reaching and momentous media change. The classical archive, in which negatives, slides and photographic prints are available on demand, is losing its function. Hard drives and databases are taking its place, the pixel is replacing the grain. In this situation, securing and activating photographic archives and estates are currently among the most important tasks in the world of photography.

In keeping with this insight, the F.C. Gundlach Foundation not only looks after and activates the oeuvre of its founder, but also the works of other important German photographers – Wilfried Bauer (1944-2005), Peter Keetman (1916-2005), Dirk Reinartz (1947-2004), Werner Rohde (1906-1990) and Toni Schneiders (1920-2006).

Together with the Deutsche Fotothek, the F.C. Gundlach Foundation also conceived the Archive of Photographers, which began its activities in September 2012 and assumes responsibility for our cultural heritage in the form of photographic works and estates as a point of contact, analogue archive and digital showcase.