© Markus Kison

12th Art Division Excellence Award

touched echo

Interactive art [Germany]

Markus KISON


There are iron railings on a hill overlooking the city of Dresden. When you rest your elbows on the railings and place your hands over your ears, the sound of descending airplanes and exploding bombs can be heard through bone conduction. In 1945, in the last days of World War ll, U.S. and British forces carried out a random bombing raid over Dresden in eastern Germany. To cope with the sound of the air raid, the people of Dresden at that time covered their ears and bent their heads in the same way as the audience experiences this installation. This work hands down the city’s tragic memories.

Reason for Award

A park with a sweeping view of the city of Dresden. The audience finds a picture of a human figure bending its elbows and placing its hands by its ears on the balustrade of this terrace. They might wonder what it means, and try to adopt the same pose as in the picture. Then, the sounds of airplanes flying overhead and exploding bombs penetrate their ears through their hands. At the same time, the artist causes the balustrade to vibrate, and the audience, whose elbows are resting on the balustrade, become aware of the sound of the bombardment through bone conduction. The audience then realizes that Dresden was almost entirely destroyed in an air raid on February 13, 1945, with enormous loss of life. As you look at Dresden spread out before you, you can hear the sound of an aerial bombardment. The presentation is simple but has critical power and the element of surprise. In this genre, there is a tendency to focus on technological aspects, but if the work claims to be a piece of art, the main issue should be what it conveys. The artist received high praise for his engagement with the human philosophical perspective and addressing the historical issues while making full use of technology.