Rennpferde der Lüfte (2021)
The relationship of man to the dove could not be more different. On the one hand, the pigeon is regarded as a symbol of peace and hope; on the other, it is reviled as the "rat of the air.
The pigeon used to be an important factor for cultural identification in the Ruhr region. After all, carrier pigeon racing, which originated in the 19th century, was considered the most important leisure activity. For many immigrants from Eastern Europe who moved to Western Germany with their pigeons, the common sport became an integration machine for an entire generation. For the miners, the pigeon sport developed as a compensation for the hard working life underground and the "racehorses of the miner" flew in millions over the skies of the Ruhr area.
Today the pigeons have disappeared from the settlements in many places. Young people are less and less interested in the tradition of the sport that was once so closely associated with the Ruhr region.
Part of the DOCKS-collective Project “Ruhrgebiet:Notizen”
Billbord exhibition Hagen/Hamm/Oberhausen/Gelsenkirchen
STERN Magazine, July 2023