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Baltensperger+Siepert Imaginary Landscapes

The artists Stefan Baltensperger (b. Switzerland) and David Siepert (b. Germany) have been collaborating in Switzerland since 2007. In their artistic practice, they consider social, cultural and political issues, and they believe their role as artists is to create new ways of observing and understanding the world in which we live.

 

In the “Imaginary Landscapes” installation displayed on the wall at the museum’s entrance, the artists continue to deal with the topics of national identity, geopolitical structures and the role played by the state in determining borders and limitations. The installation comprises a collage of photographs from the borders of the State of Israel that appear frequently on internet search engines and represent the areas of confrontation most mentioned on the net.

 

In pasting and positioning these cutout pieces of the landscape in a new context, the artists obliterate the official borders of the State of Israel, thus creating imaginary landscapes that undermine accepted perceptions and give expression to the desire to create a different reality.

 

Three video screens are positioned on the collage, partially concealing the landscape. The videos feature battery-operated toy soldiers that are devoid of identity and detached from any specific time and place. These “soldiers” grip their rifles and advance to the rhythm of their modified version of Abba’s popular hit Dancing Queen from the 1970s. The military act of soldiers firing their weapons turns into a robotic and amusing dance, thus reexamining the customary practice of solving conflicts by means of violence.

 

Rina Genussov

Exhibition Curator