The Photographers of the Festival 2020

Ludwig Van Beethoven – Ode to Joy

“Music is revelation, superior to any wisdom and philosophy. Anyone who opens himself to my music must become free of all misery.”
Ludwig van Beethoven 

Ludwig van Beethoven came to Baden 17 times between 1803 and 1825 for his health. He had been suffering from gout and rheumatism for years. His doctors had recommended medicinal baths and strolls. With amazing effect: “I never thought I could be as lazy as I am here”, -Beethoven wrote in a letter to a friend. Yet he continued to work on many of his compositions. In 1823 he wrote large parts of the 9th symphony and it was in Baden that he set -Schiller’s Ode to Joy to music for the fourth movement, never imagining that it would be chosen for the official European anthem 127 years later.

Last year, festival director Lois Lammerhuber for the first time invited the photographers participating in the festival to create a joint exhibition of pictures taken locally, in Baden, just one photograph per participant, on the theme “50 Years of Rosarium”. And a year later? For 2020, Lammerhuber asked the photographers to contribute one picture on the 250th anniversary of Ludwig van -Beethoven’s birthday. The Beethoven places and memorabilia to be highlighted were selected in cooperation with Ulrike Scholda, director of the Baden museums. Then Covid-19 struck and the photographers were unable to travel to Baden.

What now? Lois Lammerhuber, multiple winner of the world best photographer accolade, decided to stand in for his fellow photographers and went to work. He analysed their styles and tried to follow their way of thinking in his photographs. The result is a tribute to the photographers of the festival, who created a tribute to Beethoven in absentis – except for the picture by Christian Schörg of the fresco in the Beethoven temple. By the way, the creator of the fresco, Hans Lukesch, called it: Ode to Joy.

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