In three large-scale photographs, aircraft movements over Dubai and Sharjah in 2019 are photographed from different perspectives and positions and digitally overlaid. In the pre-Covid period, 50 to 80 departures per hour could be expected from all airports in Dubai. A fourth photo shows a nearly blank image from March 2020, with only three flight tracks visible. The viewer sees what appears to be a different sky picture - because there are almost no more flights and thus hardly any traces of movement.

During the time of the pandemic, the sky space above the viewer and thus his perception has completely changed. Familiar ways of seeing and behaving are questioned, controlled and restricted.  Digitally calculated maps show flight movements, exact contents can be extracted from the data: Departure, arrival, passengers. What is abstractly indicated in these maps can be completely read out by programs. The trace in the sky that appears to the eye is nothing more than a data set.

The impression of disorientation when looking at the photographs of airplanes with light trails corresponds to the experience the viewer has when looking at the starry sky at night; he has to orientate himself with a special navigation system. In the panels, the cropping and portrait format reinforce the feeling of losing one's footing in this abstract landscape. And yet, in these photographs, the changes of everyday life can be read out on the basis of limited flight lines.

Flights over Dubai/Sharjah #1, #2, #3 – December 2019

Flights over Dubai/Sharjah #4 – March 2020

Digital Photograph, C-Print, mounted on Acrylic, 110 x 220 cm

Exhibited at Maraya Art Centre Sharjah, 2020