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“It never changes to stop”

Sarah Van Marcke controls her photographic work with a highly demanding and refined care. She rarely focuses
on a chaotic nature, but rather on situations and objects that are firmly determined by a human filter. How
buildings and objects appear to us is culturally determined. They are subject to functional requirements,
industrial parameters and fashions. They are linked to time and to their surrounding area. Sarah Van Marcke
approaches those phenomena in a detached and uncanny way, so they suddenly start spinning in a framed and
strange stillness.
Western European shopping streets are amazingly exchangeable: pedestrian zones or unidirectional axes, the
ground floor of existing homes accommodate chain stores and employment offices. In smaller provincial towns
competition from larger retailers along highways and malls is manifest: smaller, autonomous and typical shops
disappear, leaving empty front shop windows here and there. They are places where time comes to a standstill.
These places are disruptive to the entrepreneur’s soul, however a poetic oasis for those who’re open to musing.
Empty windows, old posters and calendars, fading colours, dust and real estate agencies placards define a
frozen and sleepy atmosphere that strongly contrasts with the bustle of everyday life.
That mental stagnation was intriguing to Sarah Van Marcke. The remains of the commodity or a few wellchosen
attributes appear in her photographic work as frozen fetishes, acting simultaneously as lightly and
oppressive. A shoe, a coat hanger, a suit: isolated and freed from the context of temporary sales or a seasonal
fair they come to us as a strange melancholic sculpturen.

Translated from a text by Frederik Van Laere, Cuesta