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Breker CCTV

16 channel video and sound installation, 7 min. loop, 2023

The multichannel installation ‘Breker CCTV’ reacts to the current presence of more than 300 figurative sculptures in the German public sphere realised by artists from the so-called “Gottbegnadeten-Liste” (the List of the God-Gifted) – a list composed by Adolf Hitler and Joseph Goebbels in 1944 naming the artists they considered most essential to the Nazi regime and who were practically designing and articulating the Nazi aesthetics.

Not commemorating any specific historical figure or event, the bronze and stone sculptures depict anonymous men and women, representations of an imaginary superior human race. Athletic, naked and determined, the figures are spread all across Germany in main squares, green parks, next to lakes and at entrances of buildings, staring at the horizon and awaiting a future that never realised itself.

Assuming the disposition of a control room, ‘Breker CCTV’ forms an investigation of the public space in Germany and follows 16 of these figures – all realised in the years 1933-1945 by artists from the Gottbegnadeten-Liste – trying to question the circumstances and considerations that led – over and over again – to the decision to keep them in their place for more than 80 years now.

Following the supposed objective observation of the sculptures, viewers find themselves in the position of the guards trying to detect signs of danger and discover any traces of disastrous ideologies in the sculpted bodies. As the cameras gradually leave their authoritarian position and begin to approach the sculptures and focus on different body parts, curves, textures, the impulsive attempt to distinguish between an objective and a subjective observation becomes futile, leading to a blurry and undesired spiral of intimacy and discomfort.

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