The Stasi – the famous and morose East Germany police – is exhibited at the Circulation(s) Festival in Paris. German photographer Simon Menner, born in 1978, studies the role of images in current conflicts. In his series Images from the Secret Stasi Archives, the artist collects olds pictures of this espionage police service from the GDR (German Democratic Republic). “The Stasi agents were breaking and entering, which was illegal, even according to the GDR laws. To cover their tracks, the agents often used Polaroids. This way, when they entered a building, they would take pictures of what seemed promising. After several searches, the Polaroid pictures helped them put everything in its right place. What seemed to be the most banal image of a messy bed was in fact the proof of an illegal and brutal act”, Simon Menner explains. Between disguise and camouflage of a time passed, the project questions the banalisation of current technological methods of surveillance.

© Simon Menner