3: Landscape as Political Text Inspiration

Shimon Attie



Shimon Attie (born Los Angeles in 1957 ) is an American visual artist. He was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2008, The Rome Prize in 2001 and a Visual Artist Fellowship from Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute for Advance Study in 2007. His work spans a variety of media, including photography, site-specific installation, multiple channel immersive video installation, performance, and new media. Much of Attie’s practice explores how a wide range of contemporary media may be used to re-imagine new relationships between space, time, place, and identity. Much, though not all, of Attie’s work in the 90s dealt with the history of the second world war. He aims to engage his audience in a direct confrontation with collective memory and the historical narrative of a place.

The Writing on the Wall (1992–94)

The work explores loss and trauma in relation to place. It consisted of a series of site-specific projections in Scheunenviertel, which was Berlin’s Jewish quarter. Through meticulous research, Attie used images from before the 1930s and projected these onto the remains of buildings, which have since been demolished as the area has been redeveloped. These ‘montages’ are very carefully arranged, so that pictorial elements from the projected photographs complement architectural details, such as windows and doorways. The resulting effects are provocative, ghost-like tableaux in a temporal transgression, where fractured narratives converge unnaturally in one space.

See images

Recent work

More recent projects have involved using a range of media to engage local communities to find new ways of representing their history, memory and potential futures. Attie’s artworks and interventions are site-specific and immersive in nature, and tend to engage subject matter that is both social, political and psychological. In 2013, Shimon Attie was awarded the Lee Krasner Award for Lifetime Achievement in Art.


Lots of You Tube videos but rather long lectures

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