Joscha Steffens graduated from Hochschule für Grafik und Buchkunst (HGB) in Leipzig and completed the post graduate program of Kunsthochschule für Medien (KHM) in Cologne. He was Artist in Residence at Rijksakademie van beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam and appointed AIR Fellow of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences in the Research Group of the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study (NIAS/KNAW).
Joscha Steffens creates work about - and within - hidden communities that immerse themselves in an imaginary world. He mainly focuses on the game world - both virtual and live-action - and on the violence that is aestheticized in it. In his artistic research he tries to approach these communities and their members as open-minded as possible, even if some of their worlds are ruled by absurd ideals that build the game narrative and virtual identity while manipulating history and memory to dangerous degrees. The focus of his work lies especially on those forms of gaming that require their members to immerse themselves completely in the skin of their avatar and transcend the limits of play.
Selected solo and group exhibitions, commissioned projects and artist talks include: Künstlerforum, Bonn. DE (2022); Kunsthalle Erfurt, DE (2021); Van Nelle Fabriek, Rotterdam, NL (2021); NIAS Conference, Amsterdam, NL (2021); CenSAMM, Bedford, UK (2020); Folkwang Museum, Essen, DE (2020); PORT25, Mannheim, DE (2020); Photomuseum Braunschweig, DE (2020); De Pont Museum, Tilburg, NL (2020); Haus am Kleistpark. Berlin, DE (2020); 1st Bangkok Art Biennale, Bangkok, TH (2018); Huis Marseille, Museum voor Fotografie, Amsterdam, NL (2018); Ung5, Cologne, DE (2018); Act for Democracy! - The European International, De Balie, Amsterdam, NL (2018); European Central Bank, Frankfurt a.M, DE (2018); Goethe Institut, Amsterdam, NL (2018); Fotomuseum Winterthur, Winterthur, CH (2018); ART Berlin, Berlin, DE (2017); B3 Biennial for the moving Image, Frankfurt a.M., DE (2017); Galerie Conrads, Düsseldorf, DE (2017); HSG, Sankt Gallen, CH (2017); DZ Bank Kunstsammlung, Frankfurt a. M., DE (2014 & 2016); Westwerk, Leipzig, DE (2016); UNSEEN, Amsterdam, NL (2016); Goethe Institut, Bangalore, IN (2016); EYE Film Instituut, Amsterdam, NL (2016); NAK, Aschaffenburg, DE (2015); Philara Collection, Düsseldorf, DE (2015); Fabrica Braco de Prata, Lisbon, PT (2014); HDKV, Heidelberg, DE (2014 & 2022); F/Stop Fotofestival, Leipzig, DE (2014).
Joscha Steffens' work across photography, video installations, games and film was awarded amongst other with Wüstenrot Foundation Award for Documentary Photography (2017), Großer Kunstpreis Köln (2016), Mannheimer Kunstpreis of Heinrich-Vetter-Foundation (2020) and has been supported amongst other by German National Academic Foundation, Royal Academy of Arts and Science, Mondriaan Fonds, VG-Bildkunst, Amsterdam Fonds voor de Kunst, Stimulerings Foundation, Filmfonds NL, Stiftung Kunstfonds, Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony and Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen.
Works in public and private collections include: Fotografische Sammlung Folkwang Museum Essen, DZ Bank Art Collection, Art Collection of the European Central Bank, Huis Marseille - Museum voor Fotografie, Collectie Rijksakademie van beeldende Kunsten, Elise Mathilde Foundation, Art Collection City of Heidelberg.
website by studio Pointer*