Reiner Riedler’s photography captures a slice of the travel industry that capitalizes on that very sentiment. Call it manufactured travel. His Fake Holidays series documents vacation spots from around the world, and they’re all a mirage. There are crystalline tropical beaches, built inside a resort in Germany. Guests get their picture taken in front of replicas of Mount Rushmore in China, and dine next to Mayan ruins in Florida. In Dubai, there’s an indoor ski resort—with snow.
“I was fascinated first by temporary city beaches,” Riedler says. “They are now common all over Europe, but at the beginning of my work, this was new. After work people went to these artificial beaches and enjoyed the feeling of being on holidays. I wondered why people were so easily manipulated, as if sand, drinks, music, and a tub of water are the ingredients for happiness.”