Viewing the Emergent City and Its People

silent world imagines cities at the end of the world

the ‘silent world’ photographic series by lucie & simon uses neutral density filters and long exposure photography to eliminate people and cars from busy cities and streets
‘tian’anmen square’ (2010)
C-print, 200x256cm

in their series ‘silent world’, paris-based, franco-german artistic duo lucie & simon use tricks of the photographic trade

to render the world’s busiest cities free of cars and even people.

neutral density filters allow photographers to limit light entry without closing the aperture or increasing the shutter speed.
the higher the F-stop reduction, the greater the effect, allowing for super-long exposures which make moving objects like people and cars
essentially invisible, while only immobile structures remain. extremely high level filters are used by NASA to analyze star patterns.

in the ‘silent world’ images, lucie & simon leave just one or two people visible in the photograph:
‘small intrusions [whose] disconcerting presence disrupts the majestic calm of the streets and squares.’

‘xizhimen ring road’, beijing, china (2012)
0’59 video, plasma screen, 80x110x30cm

‘silent worlds’ (2012)

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