BOAZ AHARONOVITCH: GERMANY 1945-2008
scopio aboveground: territory (winner)
A US Air force navigator during World War 2 photographs a bomb falling from his plane onto a populated area. I took single snapshot, this “decisive moment”, and stretched it into an imaginary continuum. Germany of the 1940s is conflated with images of contemporary Germany taken in 2007. The bomb falls, smoke covers the city. Historical documentation is transformed into fiction. Yet perhaps this fictional dimension was there from the very beginning, for the original photograph was already rooted in a form of historical fiction, in a false narrative of otherness that juxtaposed “here” and “there”, “now” and “then”, “us” and “them”. In this work, these dichotomies begin to dissolve. “Then” and “now” are fused. The image of the bomb hitting a populated area becomes an image of all bombs – past, present and future. The image of distraction is an image of all distraction. And facing this distraction is a desperate attempt to overcome the camera’s inability to simultaneously hold “then” and “now”, its failure to capture the recurrent pattern, the historical dimension, and the “human condition”.
Germany of the 1940s is conflated with images of contemporary Germany taken in 2007. “Then” and “now” are fused.
Year of Production: 2008
Technical description: The work assembles archival material from the bombing of the American air forces on German civilians at the end of World War II, with current digital footage that I took when flying over Germany in 2007.