BY GREGOR SAILER
Closed Cities (2009–2012)
In his impressive photo series Gregor Sailer examines the forms taken by closed cities in Siberia, Azerbaijan, Qatar, Chile, Algeria / Western Sahara and Argentina. The term closed city was originally coined for the Soviet Union, where, for various reasons, the existence of numerous towns was long kept secret. Some of them were not officially "opened up" and added to maps until the early years of this century. Even today, there are still artificially created urban zones across the globe that are hermetically sealed off from the outside world either by walls or by the hostile landscape that surrounds them. These might be places where raw materials are extracted, military sites, refugee camps – or gated communities for the affluent. Such time-limited forms of urban settlement strikingly illustrate the turning point humanity is facing at the beginning of the 21st century in view of dwindling resources, climate change, political conflicts and the yearning for unqualified security.
Gregor Sailer was born in 1980 in the city of Tyrol, Austria where he currently lives and works.
Between 2002 and 2007, Sailer studied communication design, with a focus on photography and experimental film, at the Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts (Germany).
In 2015 he was granted his master’s degree in photographic studies from the same institution. He has since received numerous international awards and produced several publications and exhibitions in New York, Washington D.C., Paris, Berlin, Frankfurt, Munich, Barcelona, Vienna, Prague, and Budapest.