Leipzig-based photographer Jens Klein (born 1970) assembles a series of photographs found in the Stasi archives, in sequences depicting events like walking the dog and checking the mail, that call into question the purpose of such surveillance.
The photographer Jens Klein was invited by the Evangelisches Studienwerk Villigst to produce an image book. He decided to sift through the application documents of over eight thousand scholarship holders from the 1950s on who had submitted analogue passport photographs to accompany their applications. Covering a period from 1950 to 2012, Klein selected 176 photographs of applicants who had received support from the foundation: a kind of transverse look across time and a visual chronicle reflecting Germany’s history and the evolution of photography. The photographs show how the medium has changed over the years: from black and white to colour, from an analogue to a digital medium, from elaborate studio shots to quick photo-booth pictures. In 2012, the Studienwerk introduced an online application process, thus ending the era of analogue images.