Upcoming exhibit explores issues surrounding ISIS propaganda images

“Landscapes of Absence,” an exhibit of work by multi-disciplinary artist Brandon Bauer, will be on view April 1 through May 1 in Caestecker Gallery, C.J. Rodman Center for the Arts, on the Ripon College campus.

An artist’s talk will be presented at 7 p.m. April 1 in the Rodman lobby, and a reception will follow in the gallery.

Bauer is an assistant professor of art in new media and photography at St. Norbert College in De Pere. His practice involves the critical use of observation and spectatorship, the exploration of contextual meaning of images and objects as well as experimental mapping and collaborative projects.

“The project ‘Landscapes of Absence’ explores ethical issues around the use of ISIS propaganda images within the mainstream media,” Bauer says. “In particular, the project examines the use of propaganda images in the absence of reliable and journalistically objective images, since the brutal beheadings of western journalists has made it too dangerous to report from areas under the control of the self-proclaimed Islamic State.

“The project uses images drawn from eight beheading incidents disseminated through ISIS media outlets. The work erases the dehumanized image, leaving only the landscape and the absence of image as a metaphor for the larger issue of the absence of reliable reporting.”

(Image: “Landscape (James Foley)”)


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