Photographs by Michael Blaser.
Edition Patrick Frey, 2013. 144 pp., 72 color illustrations, 10x10".
Das Mittelland (The Midland) a landscape strewn with buildings, oscillating between nature and urbanity.
A world full of intersections and gray zones, city and country-side, nature and development, public and private space merging into one. Is the midland merely a conurbation, one large housing settlement?
Michael Blaser grew up in the suburbia, which is perhaps why he has taken an interest in its idiosyncrasies. He is not creating landscape and architecture photographs. His pictures are a social documentation. These domesticated landscapes together with their infrastructures are a reflection of contemporary Switzerland, a country striving for a modern, urban identity, and yet still unable to free itself of its provincial image. There are no people in Blaser's pictures, but their presence is nevertheless strongly felt. The sober facades hint at the inner life of the buildings and their residents. An unsettling quiet radiates from the strict composition and the pictures that are devoid of people. A strange melancholy pervades the work. The observant viewer senses a narrative moment behind the seemingly formal and banal presentation, a subtle bitter-sweet poetry of everyday life.