home front – staging war

Staufer-Kaserne Pfullendorf, Tag der Bundeswehr, 15.6.2019

Staufer-Kaserne Pfullendorf, Tag der Bundeswehr, 15.6.2019

Firefighting Training Facilities of the CBRN Defense, Safety and Environmental Protection School in Stetten am kalten Markt During the inauguration ceremony of a part of the fire simulation facility in 2016, the VIP area is cordoned off with barrier tape.

Firefighting Training Facilities of the CBRN Defense, Safety and Environmental Protection School in Stetten am kalten Markt During the inauguration ceremony of a part of the fire simulation facility in 2016, the VIP area is cordoned off with barrier tape. In the background there is a transport aircraft modeled on the Airbus A400M and equipped with turboprop engines on the starboard side and jet engines on the port side.

Simulation of smoke and flames inside the building. The blue light portion makes it more difficult to find a casualty’s veins during casualty care. High-performance loudspeakers reproduce background noise in a realistic manner, which hinders communication

Simulation of smoke and flames inside the building. The blue light portion makes it more difficult to find a casualty’s veins during casualty care. High-performance loudspeakers reproduce background noise in a realistic manner, which hinders communication and generates additional stress.

Camp Heuberg, Stetten am kalten Markt. Wall opening and shot holes. The marking sprayed on with red spray paint shows the repair effort necessary to restore the room to its original condition.

Camp Heuberg, Stetten am kalten Markt. Wall opening and shot holes. The marking sprayed on with red spray paint shows the repair effort necessary to restore the room to its original condition.

Staufer Barracks in Pfullendorf-Special Operations Training Center, "Dinohausen". Added precast concrete elements simulate foxholes, access trenches, and communication trenches. Their design makes it easier for the instructors to observe and to

Staufer Barracks in Pfullendorf-Special Operations Training Center, "Dinohausen". Added precast concrete elements simulate foxholes, access trenches, and communication trenches. Their design makes it easier for the instructors to observe and to intervene in the trainees’ activities, and it prevents accidents from falling down. Burning smoke pots enable approaching aircraft to see the direction and force of the wind and the condition of the landing zone.

Firefighting Training Facilities of the CBRN Defense, Safety and Environmental Protection School in Stetten am kalten Markt Building 164, the training house for firefighting, has been built specifically for this purpose, and its layout resembles the layou

Firefighting Training Facilities of the CBRN Defense, Safety and Environmental Protection School in Stetten am kalten Markt Building 164, the training house for firefighting, has been built specifically for this purpose, and its layout resembles the layout of a multifamily dwelling. Inside the training house fires can be sparked off by means of solid and liquid incendiary materials or substances.

Former main gate of the ammunition depot of the US Armed Forces for nuclear missile warheads. It has been used by (German) Special Operations Training since 2010. The “Black Room,” in which black is the predominant color, can be totally darkened; experien

Former main gate of the ammunition depot of the US Armed Forces for nuclear missile warheads. It has been used by (German) Special Operations Training since 2010. The “Black Room,” in which black is the predominant color, can be totally darkened; experience has shown that this room creates feelings of hopelessness and of being abandoned; the students learn to fight against these feelings. For security reasons, this room is also entirely monitored by a camera system capable of night vision.

Claudio Hils had the opportunity to explore restricted access zones of the German armed forces, the type that exist all over the world, but that are almost always off limits. In southern Germany, troops and special task forces are rehearsing potential future military interventions among props from wars of the past as well as in the latest digital test environments.

Claudio Hils’s subdued photographs resemble surreal stage sets, reminiscent of picturesque tableaus or cinematic backdrops. The sharp contours demarking time and reality begin to blur, before the boundaries between reality and fi ction are ultimately shattered by virtual images from Bundeswehr training software.

Essays by Tobias Daniek, Stefanie Hoch, Bernd Stiegler, and Edwin Ernst Weber supplement the visuals from military, artistic, and historical perspectives.

  • Exhibitions
    • 2021
    • Heimatfront – Bühnenbilder des Krieges, Kreisgalerie Schloss Meßkirch, DE (01.07. - 01.10.2021)
    • 2020
    • Heimatfront – Bühnenbilder des Krieges, Kunstmuseum Thurgau, Karthause Ittingen, Warth, CH (27.09.2020 - 18.04.2021)