The group of former Stasi- prisoners I interviewed have never before spoken on tape or in public.
To remove the boundaries of time I have interviewed them as silhouettes. At first glance, this gives them an air of illegality. The viewer gets the impression that they can’t reveal their identity. But their meaning goes deeper.
Faces can be misleading. Exterior first impressions like beauty, gender, age, race or other categories disappear when we view a silhouette. What remains is the tone of their voice and their body- language.
It is my goal to bring the experiences of former political prisoners into the present and communicate the immediacy they feel. Though they have been released from jail decades earlier, their trauma continues to haunt them and - as many of the interviews show – it extends into the lives of their children. The phenomenon of political imprisonment is timeless. Yet, its victims can only speak to us from the past. It is its nature to be silenced in the present. (Stefan Roloff, 2010)