Barbara Visser

° 1966

Dutch conceptual artist Barbara Visser (°1966) works mainly as a photographer, film and performance artist. She also works as a director, documentary maker and scriptwriter. Visser studies photography at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam and continues her studies at the Van Eyck Academy in Maastricht.

Her artistic practice is characterised by the creation of chaos amidst patterns of expectation. To achieve this she employs, in a fashion uniquely particular to herself, the alienation of reality by using overwhelming powers of visual persuasion. She not only tries to sow confusion and mislead her viewers, but attempts to nestle within the dubious twilight zone that spans the myriad realities. Barbara Visser’s efforts are occupied with the highly uncertain relationship between recording and dramatization. In addition, she toys with the concepts of the original and the copy, and explores how images can influence and distort history and collective memory. In so doing she attempts to expose clichés and shatter entrenched conceptual frameworks. Among others, she draws attention to her work with a series of photographs of a bather, basking in the sun – entitled Le monde appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt [The World Belongs to Early Risers] – juxtaposed with a photographer taking shots of a refugee washed up further ashore.

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