Miriam Rutherfoord & Joke Schmidt

According to the Federal Office for the environment, a large part of the routes along which wild animals move have been disrupted by roads and railways. In today’s Switzerland, less than a third of these routes are intact. To remedy the situation, so-called wildlife passages have been built since the late 1990s, for instance as bridges over motorways, and are intended to reconnect the interrupted routes.

For their video installation Baummarder, Biber, Dachs,.. (Pine Marten, Beaver, Badger...) Miriam Rutherfoord & Joke Schmidt have filmed various wildlife passages. In the calm, documentary-style recordings, however, not the entire structures become visible, but rather individual elements of them. In the process, bizarre scenarios come to light. Piled branches have been strategically placed to direct animals to the passages; bushes have been planted and ponds created to restore the ecological infrastructure that was once destroyed. Sound plays an important role here: the sound of moving cars can be heard off-screen, accompanying the supposedly idyllic sceneries and challenging our idea of a natural environment.

Although the artists' video was created for the exhibition in Weiertal, it is not to be understood as a completed project; rather, it is a long-term examination of man's relationship to his immediate surroundings.

Pine Marten, Beaver, Badger, Squirrel, Brown Hare, Fox, Chamois, Ermine, Polecat, Lynx, Weasel, Roe Deer, Red Deer, Water Shrew, Wild Boar, 2023, video (HD, stereo)