Government Issue is a photograph that focuses on the packaging details of the Trolli 35 lawnmower. The Trolli was one of the standard lawnmowers made and used in the former German Democratic Republic from 1962-1989. Government Issue obscures the image of the lawnmower as a means to continue the mysterious narrative of this iconic Spartanesque object. One side of the box read ‘Rückgabepflicht Verpackungen,’ which translates to ‘mandatory return of packaging.’ The concept of being obliged to return packaging to the state after material goods are purchased is somehow challenging to consider in consumerist oriented Western culture. The box hints to some practices of reuse and recycling commonly carried out in this former communist state, where raw materials where quite scarce.
Government Issue is part of the Soziale Sollbruchstelle Series of artworks. More on this project can be read about in the Soziale Sollbruchstelle Vol. 1 Publication. All works in this series can be found here.