April 28—July 23, 2023
Nassauischer Kunstverein Wiesbaden, Wiesbaden

Gewehr im Schrank / Rifle in the Closet Cemile Sahin

Exhibition view: Cemile Sahin, Gewehr im Schrank / Rifle in the Closet, Nassauischer Kunstverein Wiesbaden, 2023. Photo © Christian Lauer

Press Release

For the Nassauischer Kunstverein Wiesbaden, Cemile Sahin has developed a spatial installation entitled Gewehr im Schrank - Rifle in the Closet, in which she addresses the historical development of Western societies’ militarization, with Switzerland as a case study. The title refers to the standard practice of Swiss soldiers taking home their service weapons after military training and storing it in the closet for emergencies. As a result, Switzerland is the country with the highest density of privately stored weapons in Europe. The installation consists of a video combined with floor and wall collages, interweaving different historical, political, technical and digital aspects of militarization. The starting point of Sahin‘s research was the two treaties signed a hundred years ago, which divided up the territories of the Ottoman Empire after World War I: the Treaty of Sèvres (1920) and the Treaty of Lausanne (1923), in which, among other things, the current national borders of Turkey were defined. In 2023, as the Treaty of Lausanne celebrates its centenary, the consequences of this arbitrary border demarcation are still felt in the region today. Sahin focuses on Lausanne, the capital of the Canton of Vaud, as the negotiating site of historic armistice agreements and peace treaties on the one hand and simultaneously the most important location for the production of combat drones today. 

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