At a time when refugees in Europe are caught between a "return" policy and the rise of far right governments, this book combines photography and philosophy to examine the representation of refugees.
"In 2015 and 2016, a large population movement arrives in Europe through the Balkans. Nearly one million refugees have been welcomed in Germany. At the time, German photographer Sibylle Fendt documented emergency camps across the country. The order of the arrangement contrasts with the precarious nature of the installations and the absence of human presence challenges the viewer.
We chose to publish these images because although migration is widely documented in the media and in art, the question of the representation of refugees and their autonomy in this representation is generally overlooked.
To explore this aspect, we asked the philosophers Maria Muhle and Marina Martinez Mateo, teachers at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Munich, to write a text on this issue of representation. They proposed a very strong link between photography and refugees 'beyond the illusion of a neutral image and beyond any authoritarian determination'.
Between the search for anonymity of the exiles bypassing their registration and the images without human presence challenging our gaze, a critique of the stakes of representation emerges." Yves Drillet
Sibylle Fendt (born 1974 in Karlsruhe) is a photographer
based in Berlin. Her work focuses on long terms subjects on different categories of people on the margins of German society. She teaches at several German universities. She is a member of the Ostkreuz agency.
Maria Muhle (born 1976) teaches philosophy and aesthetics at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. Co-founder of the Berlin publishing house August Verlag, she edited the book Biopolitische Konstellationen in 2011.
Marina Martinez Mateo (born 1986) teaches philosophy of media and at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. In 2021, she published Critical Philosophy of Race (Suhrkamp) and in 2018 Politik der Repräsentation (Springer).