Marie Sommer (FR)

Obsolescence and inaccessibility have placed the Dew Line radio stations, built during the cold war, in a temporal and geographical pocket of their own which made me want to model them so I could get closer to them. Camouflaged and forgotten in a remote setting, they present a fundamental invisibility that allows them to see without being seen. By reconstituting one of the stations using computer-generated images, based on historical documents and satellite data, this documentary investigation engenders a simulated experience that brings us close to the unreachable. The new archive thus created is relocated within another spatial context, and the synthetic double creates a new discrepancy, involving doubt that the original actually existed.

The Dew-Line is a line of early-warning radars designed for the eventuality of Soviet missile attacks coming from the Pole. Installed by the American and Canadian armies along the Arctic coast, starting in 1955, some sixty bases colonised zones inhabited mainly by Inuit and other autochthonous populations along the coast of the Aleutian Islands, Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Iceland.

Marie Sommer
Marie Sommer France
Promotion Michelangelo Antonioni

Trained at the school of photography in Arles, Marie Sommer has had residencies at the Centre Photographique d’Île-de-France and at the Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris, and was a pensionnaire at the Casa Velázquez in Madrid. In 2010 Éditions Filigranes published her book Teufelsberg, followed in 2020 by Une île. Her work has been exhibited, among others, at the Fondation Gulbenkian, Paris, the Deichtorhallen Hamburg, the Kyoto Art Center, and the CNA Luxembourg. Since 2018 she has been artist/researcher at Figura, a centre for research into the imaginary at the University of Quebec in Montreal, in partnership with Le Fresnoy. Her research bears mainly on sites that constitute archives of the cold war.

    Production : Le Fresnoy, Studio national des arts contemporains