Conceptual work for the art collection of Energie AG and the percent-for-art program “Kunst am Bau”
The project Kundenbilder [Pictures of Customers] starts from the observation that customers are never visible to call center employees, for which reason they are always something abstract.
So for this work, customers who called the front office of electricity provider Energie AG about their connections to the grid were invited to take part in an artistic project: the artist would go directly to participants’ homes and take photos of them in their living environments, photos that would then be exhibited. The selection of customers is therefore based purely on the coincidence of who called and chose to say yes.
These Kundenbilder are now displayed in the reception area of Energie AG’s front office. The customers have thus left the realm of the abstract to become concrete— which, naturally, changes employees’ notions about them. Such reflexiveness is the project’s core idea.
Only a few of the company’s thousands of customers can be shown, of course. So these photos are necessarily mere representations of a greater whole, and thus a new case of abstraction. What does remain, though, is a changed perspective that influences ideas about “the customer.”
47x60cm, 15-part, Diasec on Dibond ACP
Text accompanying the installation, 2010