Oliver Boberg · Night Sites

The Gallery of Art is currently showing two DVD projections titled Night Sites by German artist Oliver Boberg. Boberg’s Night Sites are ambiguous, empty urban spaces that evoke suspense and mystery. The dark, bluish-black settings lack narrative and are motionless, except for the falling of snow, flickering of light, or drifting clouds of fog. They create the illusion of recognizable settings by suspending disbelief in the viewers and evoking them to create narrative through their own experience or understanding of reality. The narrative the viewer creates is influenced by the nightmarish quality and dismal appearance of the settings. However ambiguous the images may be, the viewer is left with little doubt of their reality.

Because Boberg’s Night Sites have the ability to extract such emotion, it is shocking to discover that they are actually fabricated realities. Chest height models are constructed by the artist in his studio with plaster, cardboard, and plywood, which are manipulated with paint, glue and studio lighting.  His attention to detail and the meticulous recreation of these nocturnal sites create believable surrogates of reality, therefore manipulating the viewer’s perception by limiting their range of imagination through the use of manufactured images. 

The Night Sites developed out of Boberg’s earlier works called Sites, in which he photographed his constructed models.  He has been creating Night Sites since 2002. 

Oliver Boberg was born 1965 in Herten, Germany and studied at the Art Academy Nuremberg from 1986-93.  He currently lives and works in Furth, Germany.