Monday, April 9, 2012

"364 Suisses Morts"


"364 Dead Swiss", an installation by Christian Boltanski on display at the Belém Cultural Center, Lisbon
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This post is linked to Taphophile Tragics

31 comments:

Dina said...

Oi, that's a sad title.

Cathy Hudspeth said...

A very forceful installation. Great shot - really captured the intent.

Cezar and Léia said...

Parece uma reflexão triste...
Eu não visitei esse centro cultural por dentro, preciso voltar!
Léia

Lowell said...

This is a bit freaky...but then I don't know what it's about. When an installation memorializing 364 dead Swiss? Were they Swiss Jews caught up in the Holocaust? Interesting, for sure!

brattcat said...

so powerful.

Sharon said...

I'm not sure the statement the artist is making but it is very striking. I'll have to look up this artist and learn more.

黄清华 Wong Ching Wah said...

Sad place and good dedication to victims!

cieldequimper said...

That's a lot of photographs and yet so few people...

Halcyon said...

An interesting installation. What's the story behind it?

JM said...

@Lowell, Sharon and Halcyon:
"(...)lit photographs, blown up from the obituary pages of a Swiss newspaper, whose mostly smiling, mostly unconcerned subjects are united only by their nationality and their posthumousness. It is matter-of-fact to the point of banality, but that seems entirely intentional - Boltanski's point being, presumably, that all are equal in the commonwealth of the dead. The other message of 364 Dead Swiss is as simple and direct: you, as they have done, will die."
Andrew Graham-Dixon (art critic)

"We hate to see the dead, yet we love them, we appreciate them. Human. That's all we can say. Everyone is unique and important."
Christian Boltanski

ladyfi said...

Very moving installation and what a fabulous shot!

VP said...

OK, let me say that I like you picture of... this thing!

Jack said...

Everyone will die? I knew that already.

It is an interesting image, seeing the careful array of photographs, but the artist's thought seems inconsequential.

Gine said...

Quelle drôle d'idée, ce Taphophile Tragics ! Lugubre à mon avis.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

I'm glad I came in after your explanation JM, I do get the point of 'all being equal after death', it certainly is a very dramatic installation.

Sylvia K said...

What a different and very interesting place, JM, and a great post for the day, as always! Hope your week is off to a good start!

Sylvia

Wayne (Woody), whatever said...

That's a powerful image, I like it very much.

Andrew said...

It comes to us all....

Kay said...

That's a powerful artistic statement. A big work of art and a big impact. Good job capturing it.

Gemma Wiseman said...

Like many faces of unknown lives! A stark reality! Amazing power in this!

NixBlog said...

A powerful "memento mori". Even the well-off and neutral Swiss die!

Sondra said...

very interesting, I get scared when "artists" start reaching outside the realm of norm.,.,,.they can sometimes take things to an intolerable extreme, but this is well done and I like it...BET its hot in that cube with all the light.

Bob Crowe said...

I would like to see this in person and think more about its meaning. One short of a year's worth. Switzerland's famous neutrality didn't do anything for these people in the end. The design of the room suggests infinity or, more to the point, eternity. I'm sure there is much more.

Julie said...

Ah ... so they are each an 'everyman' ... there but for the grace of god ... until it is my turn.
I love the way the lighting and the ceiling funnel us into the installation. The ceiling works (I figure) like a lid on a coffin.

Very powerful, Jose. Thank you.

Oakland Daily Photo said...

It's hard to know how to respond to this installation. Perhaps a reminder that tempus fugit.

Joan Elizabeth said...

I have seen an installation like this at our War Memorial, it was very moving.

The Paw Relations said...

Wow, what an interesting picture. Is it a memorial of some sort?

Herding Cats

http://seathreepeeo.blogspot.com

Francisca said...

Hmmm... yes, we all die. And in death we are all the same. It's a reality that has not escaped me. José, I'm glad you added further information in the comments. I still wonder why the French artist would pick Swiss dead for his installation. I better go google.... Isn't the Taphophile meme terrific? :-)

Halcyon said...

Thanks for the explanation. An interesting look at death. I like the idea behind it.

Ann said...

I don't like this. At first I thought it was from a Jewish museum or somewhere like the killing fields in Cambodia where I can understand an installation such as this. Random photos from death notices, even with the artist's explanation, doesn't impress me.

Randy said...

Nice installation.