‘Out Of Business’ is an art installation of 9 bullet and shrapnel riddled shutters gathered by myself from the destroyed city-parts of Mosul, Iraq.
The idea to make ‘Out of Business’ originated in 2016, at the height of the European refugee crisis. Tensions created by this crisis led to a spike in nationalistic racism all over Europe. The many hostile and racist remarks made me wonder why people reacted this way and showed so little empathy towards these people that were simply trying to escape the horrors of war.
Personally I believe that one of the reasons for this lack of empathy is the fact that we (in the West) have no idea what war is. Even though we see it all the time in the media, it’s still a very abstract thing to imagine.
So I wanted to find a way to visualize what war is and does, so people could see what it is that people are fleeing from, while also showing that it is (again) the civilian population that is the biggest victim.
As you can see, some shutters have markings on them that were made by ISIS. The color also indicates what kind of shop it is. For example: the pink one was supposedly a toy shop (the building was destroyed, so I can’t say for sure).
All shutters were taken and transported with the permission of the owners and both Iraqi and Kurdish armed forces.