In the pastoral and scenic landscape of the Hegau region at the southern fringe of Germany, traces of climatic changes from the last ice age collide with recent man-made environmental transformations. I grew up in this region and have always been fascinated by its landscape which is modeled by volcanic activities and reshaped by glaciers. Ice and meltwater carved out basins or valleys and sculpted mountains as well as jurassic rocks. In between 2019 and 2021, I kept coming back to four places which make me feel that the forces of nature are much stronger than the forces of humans. Today, these places are of course also altered by the human hand and show more or less subtle scars. The photographic work "Tipping Point" explores the contemporary characteristics of these four places and the impact of human activities on landscapes.
12 diptychs, size variable.
2019 - 2022.
The Brudertal is a valley where hunter-gatherer groups of Magdalenian culture camped 14.000 years ago. Near the Petersfels cave, they hunted for deer and held domesticated wolves. Apart from archaeological excavations, this place had not received much attention for a long time, the cave had been overgrown with trees and shrubs. This has changed in 2003 when vegetation was cleared to re-build a late ice age landscape. Until now, the Brudertal serves as a manicured ice age themed leisure park.
The volcanic mount Höwenegg was once sculpted by ice and meltwater. It was cone-shaped and 812 meters tall. Due to basalt mining, the mountain lost 14 meters of its height and where once was solid rock is now a crater, 85 meters deep, which turned into a lake fed by rain and groundwater. The stone quarry closed in 1979, since 1983 the Höwenegg is a nature protection area.
The tallest vulcanic mount in the region is called Hohenhewen. The area surrounding this hill has already been inhabited in Bronze Age, during which agriculture began to flourish. Today, the Hohenhewen overlooks heavy extractivist practices in wood, soil and bedrock. The land is mostly privatized, used for agriculture, forestry and a proliferating gravel pit. When walking through this landscape, fences and barriers dominate the experience.
The Wasserburger valley is scattered with caves and jurassic rocks sculpted by ice and water. This former stone age hunting ground is now home to a hunting school, constant gunshots echo loudly through the valley. This irritating sound tortures local animals and nearby villagers alike. Over the last couple of years, the trees are dying in even larger numbers; all are damaged by bark beetles which spread rapidly due to monoculture, temperature rise and draught. Other changes? The road for the cars is brand new now.