Collage, C-Print hinter Glas und Bilderbuch
Collage, C-print behind glass, 450 x 300 cm, and picture book
Architecture: Atelier Lüps Architekten+Stadtplaner, Schondorf
Photos: Christoph Mukherjee
Text: Florian Matzner
“An elephant’s in our kindergarten” cries the little girl as she bounces past a large, wall-sized photograph in the entryway to the Haus für Kinder. It’s like a dream come true: a life-sized elephant trots along the exterior façade of the kindergarten’s garden and now stands in the foyer flooded with light. The two artists Clea Stracke and Verena Seibt has used a photograph of an elephant in the zoo as a background motif for the kindergarten, mounting it on the wall so that, at first glance, it looks like the elephant is really there.
Yet a second, closer look reveals that the duo have actually used collage technique, because the individual pieces of the large photo look as if they’ve been torn out—an aesthetic approach much favored by children. Moreover, even though there is a slight distortion of perspective between the photo of the elephant and the photo of the building’s façade, the illusion works. Even the reflection of the child passing by, seen in the image hidden by the glass, heightens the idea of actually being in the scene.
This invented occurrence, something between dream and reality, is accompanied and expanded by a large picture book that supposedly solves the mystery and also uses photomontage to “document” the elephant’s path from the front of the building, through the garden, all the way to the big door. The children’s everyday reality blends with the reality of the photographic images so that the girl bounding by is absolutely certain that “an elephant is in our kindergarten!”