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K-State Today

June 29, 2020

Art professor's research and artwork published in international book and featured on German television

Submitted by Malorie Sougey

Rebecca Hackemann, associate professor of art/photography, is an international artist who creates public art and photography. One of her projects has recently been featured on German television and published in an international book.

Her public art project, "Thingstaette I’m Fernglas Der Zukunft und der Vergangenheit," which in English means "Visionary Sightseeing Binoculars: Visualizing the Past and the Future," was completed in 2016 and published in the book "Thingstaette" by Kerber Verlag. Her own project was featured on German television this month, which you can view on WDR's website — it begins halfway through.

In 2014, the artist and photography professor Katharina Bosse invited 23 artists and historians to create work around the topic of the "thingstaette." The thingstaette — a word banned by the Nazis — are old Nazi architectural stages that are now scattered and derelict all over Germany. Some are used and unmarked and many lie derelict and overgrown in forests. The project's overall aim is to call attention to these sites and ask what should be done with them today. Should they be marked, destroyed or used for education?

Hackemann brought a steel stereoscope to three sites in Berlin, Borne and Herrchen and set it up near the historic site. Passersby were able to see historical stereo images of the sites and begin a dialogue about them. Many residents of Herrchen, for example, had no idea what the strange structures on the hill were.

The large art book containing text and images of her project will be released in the U.S. in late summer. Visit Hackemann's website for more information.

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