The Makes, 2010
HD video, 26 min.
© Eric Baudelaire, Courtesy Greta Meert, Brussels
Multiple constructions are dealt with in Eric Baudelaire’s video work The Makes (2010). By means of the factographic praxis, he accomplishes a balancing act between fiction and reality. The video adopts the format of bonus features on a DVD. In it, we can see a staged interview with Philippe Azoury, a specialist of Italian Cinema and the work of Michelangelo Antonioni. The conversation revolves around a purported remake of an Antonioni film he had planned to make in Japan in the Sixties. Although the film was never made it was discussed in his 1983 book That Bowling Alley on the Tiber, a compilation of notes and intentions for films that were never made. Baudelaire constructs a fictional film, in which he deals with the relationship between images and events, documents and narratives in their historical as well as hypothetical potential.
continuous color 16mm film projection with sound
© Matthew Buckingham; Courtesy Konrad Fischer Galerie and Murray Guy, New York
In Matthew Buckingham’s film and sound installation 1720 (2009), the title’s date is projected onto a small suspended screen in black Caslon typeface whilst Johann Sebastian Bach’s Sonata in G major is playing. The artist refers to historical events in 1720, the year in which Englishman William Caslon invented the eponymous font which revolutionised book design in Great-Britain. It is presumed that Bach wrote his Sonata for Prince Leopold von Anhalt-Köthen in the same year. The third movement of this work has a duration of two minutes and thirty seconds – the same length as the running-time of a one-hundred foot roll of sixteen millimeter film. The film becomes an intersection between aural and visual artifacts that share a common date of origin but are otherwise contingent.
Simon Fujiwara, "Studio Pietà (King Kong Komplex)", 2013, c-prints, triptych, each part framed: 114x79,5 cm, © Simon Fujiwara, Courtesy Galerie Neue Alte Brücke, Frankfurt and Andrea Rosen Gallery
In his three-piece photographic work Studio Pietà (2013), Simon Fujiwara develops a cathartic strategy to redefine his complex feelings in relation to the memory of a family portrait. In his effort to reconstruct a remembered photo of his young mother in the arms of her Lebanese lover, Fujiwara becomes the director of this scene, which he reconstructs with actors. Tying it to the religious iconography of the Pietà, he thus edits and overwrites conventional societal constructions and their limits.
In her video, young Israeli artist Shira Wachsmann shows how she tries to wipe out the traces of her work zerstört (2013): a site-specific work, which she has carved into the floor of an exhibition space. We see how she fruitlessly rubs cement into the floor’s gaps again and again. The tragical political dimension of this work becomes apparent once one finds out that it relates to maps from the British Mandate (1922-1948). On these maps, the word "zerstört" (destroyed) was written underneath the names of eliminated Palestinian villages.
In his video work Personal Memory (2013) Pep Agut is seen naked, slowly wiping the floor of his studio, the carrier of the traces of his painterly past. Simultaneously, words related to the human body appear. Agut connects his own history, the traces of which he is trying to erase, with the physical quality of a body, over which he is sliding. In a sense, he deconstructs the medium of painting and his own biography, thus questioning the status of the artist.