‘Hi there, is there anybody out there?’ This quest for interaction with unknown others, out there, is what engages Esther Hunziker in her work. In this work she creates a relationship between huge, unknown extra-terrestrial forms and fully terrestrial, everyday ‘alien-like’ structures of being foreign in and around us. Her publication allows us insight into a personal chain of associations, in which she brings together widely varying and decentralised sources to form a comprehensive collection of material on the topic of ‘alienation’. In these she looks for connections to estrangement within and around us — for social estrangement and isolation in the age of networked, digital communication, as well as unfamiliar, foreign alien forms and ideas. Here the Marxist theory of alienation meets young YouTube streamers’ flow of emotions, illustrations of meteorite impacts contrast with images of anonymous laboratories, research approaches from exobiology are mixed with texts from anonymous chatbots, narcissistic selfies relate to artefacts from unknown specimens, or photographs of her own sketches bump into standardised stock photography … The foreign meets the well-known; the puzzling meets the identifiable.
21 × 28 cm, 120 pp & 16 × 24 cm, 64 pp, edition: 500, co-published by Kunsthaus Baselland, edited by Ines Goldbach, design Esther Hunziker & Astrid Seme, 2018