Film Program Positioning Osmotic Impulses in 6 parts
PART 1 Friday 15.06. 19h – 22h
Yukihiro Taguchi – Selected works 2007-2011 (loop)
Yukihiro Taguchi’s presented work during the opening covers 4, 5 years of his work and 1 and half hours of stop-motion animation of his performative installations.
Taguchi Yukihiro has consistently addressed the existence or presence in invisible “air” since the very start of his career.
His first performative installation and stop-motion animation incorporating still images capturing the changes in the work was Moment (2007). Since that recording using a digital camera of the removal of floorboards from the gallery in Berlin, this has developed into Taguchi’s primary mode of expression. His performances and installations both have in common the characteristics of temporary, short-lived instability and fluidity, but one could say that while the former rely on the relationship between human physical movement and space, the latter rely on the relationship between material and space. Furthermore, when they take place in the urban spaces or public spaces that Taguchi often chooses as the location for his works, the temporary nature and fluidity of these performances and installations become synonymous with a
kind of improvisation or contingency on account of the need to adapt to changing
circumstances, and the conscious or unconscious participation of passersby is also
absorbed in this fluidity.
PART 2 Saturday 16.06. 15h – 22h
Gabriel Acevedo Velarde – Selected works (loop)
and/or, 8 min. 20 sec. (no audio), 2012
Escenario, 2005, Video, 3mins
Sinapsis Insurreccion, 2006, 3 min. 22
Prehistoria, 2005, Video, 30 mins
Gabriel Acevedo’s distinctive figures tell the artist’s own parables of society and the human condition. Pre-historia, a 30 minute film made from a storyboard of quick drawings on paper is filmed in a raw style, revealing the tape-marks where the paper is held in place. As a conceptual device it functions to expose the creative process and it also serves to remove the viewer one step from the experience of the unfolding narrative. Despite the conceptualisation, the narrative itself is so explosive that eventually the viewer no longer sees the technique and becomes emotionally drawn into the story. Pre-historia is a dark and twisted version of the Adam and Eve story. It commences with a plane crash, reminiscent of the well documented crash in the Andes 1972, where cannibalism among survivors is said to have occurred. The lone survivor is our protagonist who finds unconventional ways of cloning himself without the aid of Eve. The clones become a growing group as they replicate themselves and eventually resemble a small tribe. The tribe, created unnaturally and on the background of desperation turns out to be vicious and ungrateful to their creator. The film’s narrative has astounding moments of humour and also bizarre horror and yet it is a very astute portrayal of the human condition.
Escenario, a second film which is literally one scene lasting 3mins, is a fully executed animation. The figures are resembling our protagonist in Pre-historia, a recognizable cipher for a human in Gabriel Acevedo’s signature style. Again a group/social dynamic is examined as a surreal scenario. People are guided on a stage, where they are hit by blinding light and upon falling are escorted back off the stage where the join the jostling crowd in the dark. Escenario is a cautionary tale about vanity and herd-like behaviour.
PART 3: Sunday 17.06 15h
Clemens von Wedemeyer – Big Business (25min) and the making of the Big Business (25min), 2002
Known for installations that exist in a realm between cinema and the fine arts, von Wedemeyer’s moving-image works, shot on 35mm film or video, are usually accompanied by research material, video documentaries, or still photographs to illuminate the conception and production processes. Through their witty references, which allude to cinema classics as well as socio-critical topics and historical events, von Wedemeyer’s works are meditations on a complex world.
Big Business (2002) is von Wedemeyer’s eponymous remake of the 1929 Laurel and Hardy slapstick classic. Two sales representatives get into a fight with a customer over the sale of a Christmas tree in the middle of August. Over the course of their wacky and revengeful fight, mayhem ensues, a home is trashed, and a car is shredded with bare hands.
The socio-political references in von Wedemeyer’s work are clear to the viewer from what is today the almost obligatory ‘making of’. ‘Big Business’(2002), for example, unfolds its true impact only when one knows the story behind its making. For his film, von Wedemeyer took a Laurel & Hardy plot and set it behind the walls of the Waldheim detention centre (Saxony). While in the original Stan & Ollie try to sell a Christmas tree in high summer, and in the process of the failed sales pitch end up totally destroying the house and piano of their unwilling customer, in the remake prisoners painstakingly tear apart a house, a car and a piano. The wooden depiction of what is an only marginally comical demolition process opens our eyes to the importance of contexts of origin: the absurdity of a joyfully anarchic act of destruction (in the case of Stan & Ollie) is transferred to the locus of state authority par excellence: the prison.
PART 4 – Saturday 23.06. 15h
Jean Genet, Un Chant d’Amour
1950, France — 25 minutes, black & white (silent) (loop)
The experimental short Un Chant d’Amour, about the relationship of two prisoners and a voyeuristic guard, is the only film made by Jean Genet (1910–1986), who explored new extremes of human experience in novels like Our Lady of the Flowers and plays like The Balcony.
Un Chant d’Amour (1950) is an early defining classic of Queer Cinema, and the only film made by novelist, playwright, ex-criminal, “saint” (according to Jean-Paul Sartre), and all-around provocateur, Jean Genet (1910–1986). Still a work of enormous power, this half-hour silent is arguably the greatest film made by an author, fully transforming his literary and spiritual vision, in an original work conceived for the screen, into cinema. It is also a deeply moving romantic film, which is at once passionately (and sometimes explicitly) homoerotic and universal in its embodiment of transcendent love. While this picture is unmistakably Genet’s own, it’s also noteworthy for the uncredited involvement of the great poet-filmmaker, and Genet’s champion, Jean Cocteau.
PART 5 Sunday 24.06 15h
OU Ning and CAO Fei, San Yuan Li, China, 2003.
Experimental Documentary, 45 min.
Armed with video cameras, twelve artists present a highly stylized portrait of SAN YUAN LI, a traditional village besieged by China’s urban sprawl. China’s rapid modernization literally traps the village of San Yuan Li within the surrounding skyscrapers of Guangzhou, a city of 12 million people. The villagers move to a different rhythm, thriving on subsistence farming and traditional crafts. They resourcefully reinvent their traditional lifestyle by tending rice paddies on empty city lots and raising chickens on makeshift rooftop coops.
Directed by acclaimed visual artists Ou Ning and Cao Fei and commissioned by the Venice Biennale, SAN YUAN LI explores the modern paradox of China’s economic growth and social marginalization.
PART 6 Finissage Saturday 30.06 – 21h
as part of A Collective Memory
Conference of the Birds, 48min, HD, color & b/w, sound, 2011
by Azin Feizabadi
Drawing on the medieval saga Mantiq at-Tayr, composed in 1177 by the Sufi poet Attar, the eponymous project Conference of the Birds is a cinematically projected event that takes the form of a narrative film. The scene is a trial in an empty, abandoned space, a no-where, a moment in-between time. There are two characters: a judge and an accused. The accused is a filmmaker who has made an amorous film in order to illuminate the distance between himself and his beloved. After the film’s completion, he is arrested and accused of creating a film that has induced hypnosis amongst the citizens, causing them to rise up and turning their inner reality outward into the public sphere.
CONFERENCE OF THE BIRDS is narrated by a voiceover: the voice of the lover who made the hypnotizing film. This voice narrates two interwoven stories: the first layer describes the scene of the trial. The second narrative is the story of the Conference of the Birds itself, the film as seen by the spectator here and now. This story is addressed to an indefinite ‘you’ as a story of love and the memories of its being told in other places at other times. A sequence of historical, revolutionary uprisings is interspersed throughout the narrative, namely 1986 in Quezon City, 1989 in Bucharest, and 2010 in Tunis. Additionally, there is a third character, a hooded figure, who appears and disappears throughout the progression of the film. S/he is the soldier of melancholia, the servant of the court and traveler of time. This figure’s presence is ambivalent, suspended as an embodiment between the voice of the storyteller and the spectator him or herself.
Spread out across these two narratives, the spectator migrates together with the voiceover through seven acts as the group of birds travel through seven valleys in search of the ‘bird of the birds’,the Sirmurgh, arriving at the final scene, the seventh stage, where all the answers are supposed to be given, and yet: nothing will be revealed.