Over the last millions of years, life has adapted perfectly to the conditions on Earth.
on earth. The natural cycle of day and night is the main factor that determines when most
creatures when they are active and when they are at rest, as was originally the case with humans. It is only since modern times and the widespread installation of artificial light that this rhythm has been broken. Instead of adapting to the conditions, humans create their own.
Where does this aversion to darkness come from? And what effect does the permanent artificial lighting of our environment have on people, animals and plants? Oskar Schlechter deals with these questions in his project DARKLESS.
He searched for the brightest and darkest places in Central Europe and documented the extent of light pollution, its sources and its consequences in an artistic way. He spoke with people who encounter light pollution in their everyday professional lives, such as a somnologist, a criminologist and the technical director of a planetarium.
The aim of the work is to depict the unnatural beauty of the night under the influence of artificial light. It seems almost paradoxical that something so aesthetic, which also suggests safety and comfort to us humans, has such a lasting negative influence on the natural biorhythms of living beings. More and more research results confirm that the entire food chain, for example insects, are globally affected.
The portraits were made to reveal the disruptive nature of light.
The absence of people (except in the staged photographs) highlights the wasteful use of artificial light at night. Despite the increasing global awareness of sustainability, nature and environmental protection, light pollution is a rapidly growing problem. Year after year, the number of artificial light sources in urban and rural areas increases exponentially. The project exhibited here aims to sensitise people to the extent of this ecological challenge and to make an artistic contribution to the issue.