Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin
While searching through Brecht’s legacy, Broomberg and Chanarin found his personal copy of the Holy Bible – the cover of which Brecht had decorated with an image of a car. And then they had an idea… They designed their own version of the Holy Bible, which contains more than 600 photographs sourced from the London-based Archive of Modern Conflict. If we set aside the authorial investment – which in the case of the Bible seems impoverished on the conceptual as well as executive level – the main principle of their artistic intervention is similar to that of War Primer 2. Besides covering the Bible’s text with anonymous photographs, the authors also underline selected words and phrases in an attempt to connect images with textual references. This is another similarity with Brecht’s epigrams which in the case of the appropriated Bible are on the prosaical side, but above all such connections between the text and image seem rather blatant and in some instances, forced and artificial. Underlined words and sentences are forced into the role of »captions« of the photographs, creating an unusual poetic mixture through associations that they evoke. However, the associative process is too arbitrary and dependent on chance, which leaves the viewer with mixed, if not reserved feelings.
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