Riedlinger’s Us/Them II offers a bleak view of the likely outcome of any positive development ensuing from twenty to thirty years of settlements and the disturbance of stable ecologies and communities, including the deforestation of hills and valleys—all part of the complexity of the region that we have learned to designate as Israel/Palestine.
Before 1948 the Jewish communities were among many minorities living in Palestine. But with the advent of settlements such as Har Homa, Ma’ale Adumim, and their kin (where only their kith can live), the pluralist society that was known as Palestine has become an infertile ground.
Shaheen Merali, Curator
Excerpt from her essay in the FOTOFEST2006 Catalogue
PETER RIEDLINGER US/THEM II
US/THEM II is a major project documenting the changing landscape during the construction of the Abu Dis wall between Israel and Palestine. The images allow the viewer to understand the factors constraining dialogue, starting with the political and military conflict compounded by decades of psychological barriers. The battle for land, and mobility within this land, are foremost in these images as they allow the viewer to realize the institutional screening and intimidation of the ethnic other, the Palestinian.
Peter Riedlinger was born in Löffingen, Germany, in 1966; he currently lives and works in Berlin. Since the 1990s Riedlinger has been realizing comprehensive projects. Riedlinger studied photography at the Hochschule für Gestaltung und Kunst Zürich (University of Art and Design Zurich) and at the Hochschule für Grafik und Buchkunst (Academy of Visual Arts), Leipzig. He had recent solo exhibitions at Centre Culturel Franco-Allemand Karlsruhe, Germany; Städtische Galerie Schwarzes Kloster, Freiburg, Germany; Gallery Anadiel, Jerusalem; and Kunstverein Leipzig, Projektgalerie Elsterpark. His work is in museum collections in Europe, including those of Staatsgalerie Stuttgart; Galerie für Zeitgenoessische Kunst Leipzig; and Museum für Gestaltung, Zurich, and he has recieved numerous scholarships and grants.