Stare at These Photos and You Might Spot a Killer
Feb 12 2014
If you've ever played Call of Duty online, you'll know that snipers are very sneaky bastards. But that's kind of the point. They hide in the distance, camouflaged into their surroundings, and pick you off before you've even realised they're there. IRL, these highly trained marksmen are capable of surviving alone in the wilderness for weeks on end. They dig little holes – or "nests", as they call them – and hang out in there for a bit, before popping up and putting a bullet through someone's skull from over two kilometres away.
Artist Simon Menner was granted permission to spend some time with the German army and their snipers. During the two occasions he visited, he captured the soldiers' remarkable ability to blend into their environment, producing images that appear to be simple landscape shots until you look close enough to spot the barrel of a gun.
This is a common theme in Menner's work, which often focuses on information and the ways in which it can be restricted and revealed. Other similar works include minefields in Bosnia, and the more recent book Top Secret (Hatje Cantz, 2013), an extraordinary collection of both ridiculous and shocking images from the Stasi archives.
Have a look through the images and try to find the snipers. There are tips to help you out.