The physical scars of war remain in the landscape; the mental ones are passed on to future generations. “War without War”, a new book with images by Swiss photographer Meinrad Schade, coincides with an exhibition in Winterthur at the Photo Foundation Switzerland.This content was published on April 11, 2015 - 11:00
- Deutsch Krieg ohne Krieg
The memories are blurred, yet this is exactly where the photographer is looking for his images. Wherever war has spread death and horror – this is where he is trying to re-capture the emotions that once existed there. Collective memory as a tool against complacency.
From 2003, Schade recorded the fragile daily life – hovering between war and peace – in those countries which were formed after the collapse of the Soviet Union: in Chechnya the destruction; in Ingushetia the lives of the displaced; in Kazakhstan the consequences of nuclear tests; in Nagorno-Karabakh the border conflict; in Russia and Ukraine the rituals of remembrance, the parades.
The theme of the book becomes contemporary in the context of the pictures taken in those last two places – if it has not done so already.
“I no longer believe in the great effect of images,” Schade said in a recent interview. “It’s enough for me if the people who look at my pictures realise that war continues – although it allegedly ended a long time ago – and how people can suddenly drift back into war again.”
"War without War" was published by Scheidegger & Spiess. It is accompanied by an essay by the publisher Nadine Olonetzky und further texts by Daniel Wechlin, Michail Shishkin and Fred Ritchin.
(All images: Meinrad Schade; text: Thomas Kern, swissinfo.ch)
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