Funny Places


Size: 38 pages, 33 x 28 cm
First edition: 10 + 3
Price on request
Photography: Alexander Lipsius
Created: 2012

“Under a clear blue sky, in glistening sun light, dark figures—like skeletons—lounge in the midst of spraying fountains—a symmetrical Art-Deco façade in the background provides the stage for their highly expressive appearance. A bizarre place between life and death opens Alexander Lipsius photo book ‘Funny Places’.
The main part of this book with large-format colour prints originated in ‘Playland’, one of the USA’s oldest amusement parks. However, Lipsius’ left-of-field views into the periphery of this façade cosmos and the rear elevations of this kind of play architecture make one feel unsettled. The place seems dead, no visitors to be seen, anywhere. People appear only around the edges in the well-composed images of this amusement world. Funny? Not at all! It’s a landscape of absence: the cacophony of shoving crowds, the fast-moving mechanical attractions—all that is missing. Instead, demolished chassis and empty rows of chairs fill this sunny place with odd shadows and with an oppressive sense of melancholy emptiness. The sky does not show a single cloud and becomes itself the sign of time stood still.
Only towards the end, in a different natural ‘Playland’ Alexander Lipsius finds liveliness. On a large lawn behind the ‘Lighthouse Carousel’, trapped in the shadow of two sprawling trees, a colourful group of children is enjoying a picnic. The image of this place, grown under an eternal sky, creates hope and lets one almost forget the skeletons in the beginning of the book. Let’s play, life is short!"
Boris Hars-Tschachotin