Born in Potsdam in 1977, currently living in Potsdam. Studied at Leipzig Academy of Visual Arts. Awarded the Visual Arts Scholarship of the Federal State of Brandenburg.
In her conceptual project Wüstungen (begun 2010) – Wastelands – Anne Heinlein explores the disappearance of villages and small towns on the former German-German border. Over 10,000 people were displaced from the border zone and forcibly relocated to make way for border fortifications on the orders of the East German government. The houses and farm buildings at these sites were razed to the ground. Heinlein has portrayed these places in large-format, black and white photographs. Her images depict seemingly idyllic woods, meadows, and lakes. The title of each work – comprised of the name of the former settlement, the year in which it was first mentioned in official documents and the date of its destruction – references the historical subject of these images. The landscape, a common motif in the visual arts, forms a surface for the projection of loss and an indeterminate site of remembrance that the viewer is left to scour for overgrown paths, the remnants of buildings demolished long ago and other traces of the past. Heinlein continues to work on this project in cooperation with Göran Gnaudschun. Together, the duo have studied local archives on the history of the abandoned villages, collecting documents, conducting interviews with eyewitnesses and creating new works in photography and film. This cycle of works exemplifies an approach to art-making that is rooted in an investigative and subjective engagement with the past and provides an alternative to conventional narratives. Heinlein’s work on Wüstungen is complemented by several series of portraits of women, including Benedictine nuns at an abbey in Berlin and women serving in the German army.
Image 1: „Zarrentin-Strangen, 2008, Kreis Hagenow/Mecklenburg-Vorpommern erstmals urkundlich erwähnt 1911, gewüstet 1972“
Image 2: „Groß Grabenstedt I, 2008, Landkreis Salzwedel/Sachsen-Anhalt erstmals urkundlich erwähnt 1291, gewüstet 1986
from the series „Wüstungen“ (since 2010)
Video // directed by Dörte Grimm * camera: Martin Jörg * editor: Nadja Smith * sounddesign: Frieder Nagel * producer: Nadja Smith