What do images communicate without any indication of the source, location, or the motivation behind what has been captured in them? Viktoria Binschtok achieves just such a situation in Cutting Straws at Midnight, confronting us with a wild mix of decontextualized components that construct a reality all its own immanent to the image and leaving the rest to our cognitive abilities. Sometimes loudly, sometimes quietly, these visual clusters demonstrate their uncanny affinity based on the calculations of a machine and the incalculability of an artistic gesture.
The precisely re-staged photographs, which always refer to already existing images, refuse to be easily classified in standard genres by their artificial appearance—cuts, overlappings of several visual layers, and elements that go beyond visual borders take up our screen-based habits of vision and move them to an offline space. Still life or snapshot, professional or amateur photograph, private or public: all filters are turned off.
Networked visual information distracts us for a moment from our linear thinking in favor of a pleasurable engagement with a medium that for a long time now has not only been instrumentalized politically, but has become a yardstick for all of us in our culture of instant evaluation. It is the currency in the attention business, always rising in value, yet its subtext is an old one: it could all be this way, but it could also be entirely different.