The gentle image of “Shooting Wallpaper” by Brigitte Zieger deceived us in unexpected ways.
Subtle steps echoed throughout the hollow museum exhibition. We imitated mice. Maneuvering our way carefully, making as minimal sound as possible. It was an art museum, after all.
Our eyes wandered as well as our minds to detailed paintings, or abstract sculptures. It was like passing through a rainforest. With stealth, caution, and immense observation, we moved on.
What came before us was a holographic wallpaper. It was decorated with floral patterns, scenery, and people with the most delicate of colors. Although the lines were popping bright pink, it still gave us a sense of tranquility.
A woman from the wallpaper began to move. As the woman advanced towards us, we stood in front of it, trapped in a trance. Unsure of what would happen next, our minds filled with anticipation. In the next moment, we became meek prey of a hunter with a gun that aimed towards us.
The noise paralyzed us.
Unable to process what had happened, we stayed hypnotized as we were before. After a moment, we were able to grasp the meaning. Violence had surrounded our society with walls.
It circled around us unknowingly. It was able to hide within a blink.
Engraved into stone and etched into our skin were scars from blades of war. The air brimmed with gunpowder and misery. Our ears rang with screams and shouts of agony, but none of us knew it was there. We never looked at those beneath our feet or under the bones of the innocent. We didn’t acknowledge the dark shadows that danced around a city set in flames.
Another shot went in and out of our ears.
The wire of our reverie burned out and reality was brought forth upon us.
Our focus into the wallpaper went to a blur, and the lady returned to her original position. Peace had conquered our minds once again.