Veronika Schäpers

First You Have To Prove It To Me

Veronika Schäpers

First You Have To Prove It To Me

Date

2021

Edition Size

38

Media

Letterpress, Photograms

Paper

Efalin-paper

Binding

Hinged slipcase

Dimensions

10 × 15 × 5 in

Pages

24

Location

Karlsruhe, Baden-Württemberg, Germany

$ 4,400.00

16 in stock


View Collectors

Bucknell University

Getty Research Institute

University of California at Irvine (UCI)

University of California at Los Angeles, William Andrews Clark Library (UCLA)

FIRST YOU HAVE TO PROVE IT TO ME

In the spring of 2020, as the coronavirus spread first in China, then in Italy and finally across the entire globe, touching off a worldwide pandemic, more and more conspiracy theories also sprang up about the origin and spread of the virus. Social media and news networks played a major role in this; the established audiovisual and print media were vilified as “fake news”, and replaced by “alternative” sources.

At the start of the pandemic, for a period of two or three months when people still knew very little about the virus, a wide range of sometimes highly unusual methods were suggested as COVID-19 protection and treatment – often based on dubious scientific evidence or removed from their scientific context, making them incomprehensible. This was not a regional phenomenon; rather, it spread throughout the entire world along with the virus.

In March of 2020 I began to systematically collect different prevention measures and purported cures for COVID-19, and I discovered a connection between the dissemination of conspiracy theories and the quantity of recommended protective measures. The number of conspiracy theorists and proponents of alternative protective measures is remarkably large in the US and Germany, while during the same period in 2020 conspiracy theories played only a very small role among the populace in Japan and China.

I chose 24 objects from my collection, which I captured as black-and-white or color photograms. The object is placed directly on or very close to a sheet of light-sensitive photo paper. It is then exposed using one or more light sources, developed, and fixed. On the one hand, the photogram is considered a true image or vera icon, since it claims to show a direct, unaltered image of the object. On the other hand, photograms may be described as images of the ‘neither-nor’ that flatly deny that they depict their subject matter, for what they show is never more than either half-present or half-absent, albeit always to the scale of 1:1. They are half truth, half fiction.*

PDF document: FIRST YOU HAVE TO PROVE IT TO ME

The English translation of the main German text (in a parallel layout) is available here.
The English translation of the German captions are available here.

Idea, design, photograms, printing and binding: Veronika Schäpers

Heiko Michael Hartmann wrote his text “Reiner Wein/Pure wine” in June 2020 for this edition.
Titus Oates published his report “A True Narrative of the Horrid Plot and Conspiracy of the Popish Party” in April 1679.

The pages of the book are letterpressed (from polymer plates) on Enduro Ice-paper, with 24 original b/w und color photograms on Ilford Multigrade Deluxe, Fomaspeed and Fuji Crystal Archive, laminated on Colorplan Ebony and Colorplan Bright White. With a hinged slipcase in two colors, which is bound with Efalin-paper, and has an embossed title made by Buchbinderei Mergemeier in Düsseldorf.
The book includes 12 envelopes, each 9,45’ x 13,38’ / 25 x 34 cm.

Edition:
38 copies with consecutive Arabic numerals and
6 copies with consecutive Roman numerals.