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blinkvideo - research of video art, performance and multimedia installations.

blinkvideo - research of video art, performance and multimedia installations.

Moving Images / Moving Bodies
Online screening programme in cooperation
with the Goethe-Institut Bulgaria

Curated by Ludwig Seyfarth

Research into the human body and interpersonal relationships remain central themes in video and moving image art. Artists from Bulgaria and Germany, whose work is related in content, will be shown in pairs over the next weeks. The exhibition planned for November 2020 in Sofia has been postponed until 2021. Instead, a consecutive presentation of selected films by artists from Moving Bodies/Moving Images is presented on blinkvideo.
image: © Elitsa Dimitrova

Shooting Ghosts
Online screening programme in cooperation
with the Goethe-Institut Bulgaria

Curators: Kalin Serapionov, Krassimir Terziev

What we propose in this programme is a highly subjective and fragmented view on current practices in moving image in the Bulgarian art scene. We focused on practices that show affinity with speculative narratives - narratives that not just record what is in front of the cinematic eye, but also capture all the ghosts that are unreachable by the apparatus, thus projecting speculative views that intend not merely to describe, but to transform the world.
image: © Veneta Androva

Moving Images / Moving Bodies

 ‘Moving Images Bulgaria-Germany’ is a project by Goethe-Institut Bulgaria, that includes various online and offline initiatives, starting in November 2020. The online program, realised in partnership with blinkvideo, will consist of two curated programmes: “Moving Images / Moving Bodies”, curated by Ludwig Seyfarth, and “Shooting Ghosts”, curated by Krassimir Terziev and Kalin Serapionov.

First the programme “Shooting Ghosts” will give a selected overview of video art in Bulgaria in general. The programme will be accompanied by an in-depth essay by Krassimir Terziev as well as texts by different authors or the artists themselves on individual films.

Critics’ Pick: Vienna by Nicole Büsing + Heiko Klaas

The group show “Antarctica. An Exhibition on Alienation” was presented in Vienna during the past winter season. Departing from a note written by the Italian cult director Michelangelo Antonioni referring to a potential glacier melting in the Antarctica and a hint to a film, the two curators from the Kunsthalle Wien, Vanessa Joan Müller and Nicolaus Schafhausen, conceived an exhibition on the topic of alienation and contemporary art. The focus was on the latest contemporary photography and video art by the younger generation of artists.
Image: © Isabella Fürnkäs

UNSTILLED LIFE: Artist Animations 1980-2020
Curated by Emma Cousin and Paul Carey-Kent

Why this show, here and now? British artist-curator Emma Cousin and writer-curator Paul Carey-Kent recently pulled together a choice of artist animations, thinking that the increasingly vibrant medium is especially suited to the online emphasis of the locked down art world of 2020. Three of them turned out to be represented by Ron Mandos, making the Amsterdam gallery ideal hosts. The cast is international, and to reflect that Tintype gallery in London and Hamburg’s blinkvideo have joined in with variations on the programme. 
Markus Vater Worlds don’t come easy, 2020

Something Between Us

The exhibition „Something Between Us“ focuses on both our contemporary lives and the anthropological constants of interpersonal dealings: love, empathy, security, care and safety on the one hand, and hate, role fixation, dependency, reprimand and exclusion on the other. Something Between Us asks how these structures of togetherness are changing in our digital era.
Thomas Taube OCCIDENT, 2020


In optics, “refraction” refers to the bending of a beam of light, a change in direction which occurs at the moment when it passes from one medium to another. Through refraction, the light wave alters course, changing the way we perceive the objects it illuminates in the process. This optical deviation requires us to repeatedly correct our gaze, comparing the beginning and end points of our perception with reality, and bringing the object we see clearly into focus. In its figurative sense, refraction refers to a critical reflection on the means and channels of visualization, and by extension the possibility of a rearticulation of our view of things – how they are, were, or apparently always have been.
Image: © Sohrab Hura

NEW: Favorites curated by blinkvideo users

What do you like? Over the next few months, we will be showing here selections of works, compiled by you, as a blinkvideo user.

Stefano Miraglia: Hey Blinkvideo members! Here are my eight "must watch" films and videos. Happy to find in this catalogue some of the works that got me interested in artists' moving image when I was a student! (Guillaume Leblon! Daniel Steegmann Mangrané! Marylène Negro!).

Expanding Bauhaus.
New Reflections on the Bauhaus Movement in Time-Based Media Art / Goethe Institute Netherlands

A screening series selected by Elke Kania (Cologne), Julia Sökeland (Hamburg) and Ludwig Seyfarth (Berlin)

With its combination of various arts such as painting, photography film, architecture, fashion, product and interior design and textile art, the Bauhaus is still considered the epitome of a technologically advanced modernity. Last but not least, the attempt to create the whole society aesthetically, inspired many artists worldwide.
Image: © Adnan Softic

Johan Grimonprez

Johan Grimonprez’s critically acclaimed work dances on the borders of practice and theory, art and cinema, documentary and fiction, demanding a double take on the part of the viewer. Informed by an archeology of present-day media, his work seeks out the tension between the intimate and the bigger picture of globalization. It questions our contemporary sublime, one framed by a fear industry that has infected political and social dialogue. By suggesting new narratives through which to tell a story, his work emphasizes a multiplicity of realities.
image: © Johan Griminprez

Christoph Faulhaber: Revolution & Architecture

With "Revolution & Architecture" Christoph Faulhaber (* 1972 in Osnabrück, lives in Hamburg) conceives, builds, designs and opens a whole series of very different rooms in the Kunsthalle Osnabrück. In order to discover the revolutionary aspect of these "architectures", one has to look at the social implications of interior design in general. In the forum the visitor then enters Faulhaber's cinematic autobiography "Every Picture is an Empty Picture" as in the eye of the cyclone: The work is split into 15 individual films and surrounds the visitor in a circle.
Image: © Christoph Faulhaber

Stiftung imai – inter media art institute

The Düsseldorf based foundation imai – inter media art institute was founded in 2006 in order to establish an institution in Germany dedicated to the distribution and preservation of media art and associated activities.
Image: © Marcel Odenbach

Featured videos

Markus Vater
Im Wald (perfect day), 2011

This Animation has developed from a colloboration with the dutch poet Tjitske Jansen. Initially it reacted on a text of hers dealing with memories in her life. All memories were about events in which she didn’t understand the concepts and actions that had happened, but which she understands now.

Pratchaya Phinthong
A proposal to set (work in progress), 2016

A proposal to set CH4*5.75H20 on fire (work in progress) is an ongoing project that explores methane hydrate, an ice compound that has been identified by scientists as an alternative fuel of future energy. Found in large quantities beneath Arctic permafrost, Antarctic ice and sedimentary deposits, methane hydrate releases natural gas when exposed to increases in temperature or decreases in pressure.Gas released by methane hydrates can be lit, which produces a semi-transparent orange and blue flame.This 16 mm film shows samples of methane hydrates.Through the mobilisation and connection of individuals working across geology, science and art, the project generates awareness of methane hydrate, its chemically volatile nature and implications for energy industries.The film itself performs a kind of material transfer, capturing light emitted by the burning samples and projecting it into the gallery space. For Phinthong, each iteration of the project is a form of extraction that makes its subject more widely visible. Filmed by Phuttipong Aroonpheng. Made with the support of Oleg Blouson,Andrey Khabuev and Oleg Khlystov at the Limnological Institute, Irkutsk, Russia.

Ryan Gander
And You Will be Changed , 2014

'And You Will be Changed (Centre Pompidou, Paris)', 2014, follows curator Emma Lavigne around the empty Centre Pompidou in Paris as she presents the viewer with a tour of an empty space that had housed a now uninstalled Pierre Huyghe exhibition. The show is imagined and told by Lavigne as if the artworks were still there. Exhibited: - Pierre Huyghe +/–,The Artist’s Institute, New York, 2014
- Nouveau Festival (5th Edition), Musée d’Art Moderne, Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2014

Deimantas Narkevicius
Ausgeträumt, 2010

The German word ‘Ausgeträumt’ means a state between dream and reality at the point of waking up.The very first creative attempts by any artist are usually very positive, unaffected by criticism, even naive activities. Refering to myself, I had to be absolutely naive to choose to be a visual artist, in the late 80's when in the Soviet Union, everything was falling apart. There was no precedent of success, or an example to follow in the country which was still isolated. With this film I am re-approaching the state of naivety.

Katja Aufleger

Several lights get shot successively. Some crush at once, quiet or with a blast, others seem like trying not to die.

Janet Biggs
Vanishing point, 2009

Luzia Hürzeler
Being in the Picture, 2007/08

Im Bilde sein [Being in the Picture] is a video installation. The monitor stands on a two-meter-high plinth. The video shows a white wall in front of which my head becomes visible, fully or partially, at short or long intervals. I keep jumping up into the picture, making myself visible through physical activity. These efforts become apparent through the sounds. The jumping height, and thus my visibility, decreases over time, until I finally give up through exhaustion.On the occasion of the exhibition “Spazi aperti” this work was displayed in the entrance hall of the Romanian Academy in Rome, where a number of monumental busts are mounted on plinths.

Johanna Reich
Horizon, 2012

The artist is drawing a line onto a white surface. The line reveals the horizon: it separates the sea from the sky. "To draw a line": this phrase already linguistically contains many different meanings. Beginning with the famous line – the one that cannot be crossed politically – via the (guide)line that is also the conceptual standard, to the simple strike placed beneath an addition, these are key points on the spectrum.“When Johanna Reich draws a line with a broad brush onto a wall, additional content comes into play. There is the track which children draw onto the wall with chalk, the traditional artist myth of the line as a vivid track of creative process, and last but not least the powerfully picturesque action of splattering the wall.”(Johannes Stahl)Johanna Reich (*1977 Minden) studied at the Kunstakademie Münster, the HfbK Hamburg and the Kunsthochschule für Medien Köln. She lives and works in Cologne.

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blinkvideo is a website for the research of video art. Founders: Julia Sökeland, Anita Beckers. blinkvideo ist eine Plattform zur Recherche nach Videokunst

Critics’ Pick: Loop Fair Barcelona 2018
by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas


The Fascination with the Motion Picture

Critics‘ Pick: Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas recommend video works featured at the LOOP Fair in Barcelona in November 2018 Barcelona.

At the end of November 2018 the 16th edition of the LOOP Fair took place in Barcelona. The fair, founded by the gallerists Emilio Álvarez and Carlos Durán, is specialized in artists’ films and videos and is internationally regarded as one of the most relevant meeting points for video professionals. The artistic director Carolina Ciuti, had succeeded in luring important figures of the international video scene to the Catalan capital for the three intensive Fair days embedded in the ten-day LOOP Festival.

The LOOP Fair Award 2018 was granted to the Galerie Iragui from Moscow, which has endeavoured for many years to make Russian conceptual and video art better known on the international level. At the LOOP Fair, the gallerist Ekatherina Iragui presented Olga Chernysheva’s 27-minute film “Steamboat Dionysius” from 2004. In serene images, the camera films two protagonists during a river trip with the pleasure steamer. Underlaid with melancholy, somewhat nostalgic music, this film guides us into the world of the post-Soviet people, beyond the cosmopolitan cities of Moscow and St. Petersburg and their internationally networked elites. We witness the protagonists performing a touchingly intimate dance or enjoying simple, traditional food and drink. What appears to be alien and unattainable for Olga Chernysheva’s protagonists, however, is the world outside. They have somehow become accustomed to this homelike river landscape, strewn with old monasteries and new industrial wastelands, thus settling for the modest amusements they can afford.

The girl acting in the eponymous 16-minute animation film, “The Girl”, produced by Hans Op de Beeck in 2017, seems equally strange and mysterious. The Amsterdam Galerie Ron Mandos presented this complex, large-scale production of the versatile Belgian artist, who also wrote the immersive music for the narrative film. A deathly pale, obviously injured teenage girl stands at the centre of the grotesque sequence of images leading the viewer into a dystopian model world full of nocturnal rain-drenched free-way bridges, forest clearings, dismal dumps and brownfields, and fog-shrouded landscapes of swamps and lakes. The work shifts between modern fairy tale, gloomy horror film and fantasy music video clip. “The Girl” stirred a great deal of attention on behalf of the professional audience at the LOOP Fair.

In stark contrast to this was the ca. 15-minute film “The God of the Labyrinth” by the London-based Japanese conceptual artist Yoi Kawakubo. Born and raised in Toledo, Spain, the Japanese artist had deconstructed a text by the Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges to then generate a new text from its elements, whose individual words he finally screened in the form of English type in rapid sequence. Via headphones, the viewer listens to the artist’s voice recorded both in Spanish and Japanese. Poetic language, a subtle approach to the well-familiar phenomenon of being “lost-in-translation” along with the cognitive completion of blanks characterize this formally and intellectually challenging work presented by the London gallery Yamamoto Keiko Rocheix.

In the 29-minute video “Venom – A Diva in Exile” (2016) by the Hungarian media artist Péter Forgács, born 1950, everything revolves around Katalin Karády – once regarded as the country’s greatest film diva. The communist regime, however, stopped giving her roles from one day to the next. Hence, in 1951 , she emigrated to Brazil and never again performed as an actress until her death in 1990. Péter Forgács portrays her path into the tropical exile in the form of a collage composed of movie images fading over in a slow-motion aesthetic along with photographs, film stills and documents. Appearing repeatedly is also the author Zsófia Bán who had written a short story inspired by Katalin Karády’s fate, from which she reads individual passages. Some of the found-footage material derives from films which the author’s father had made in Brazil in the 1950s. “Venom – A Diva in Exile” is a an equally sensitive and Kafkaesque quest along the traces of the iconic Hungarian Femme Fatale and everyday heroine who, during Hungary’s occupation by the Nazi troops, could save many of her Jewish friends from the concentration camp. The film was presented by the Budapest Ani Molnár Gallery and received the LOOP Acquisition Award. It is now entering the collection of the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA) as a loan from the LOOP collection.

The crowd favourite at the LOOP Fair was undoubtedly the ca. ten-minute, ironic video “The Curator”, a humoristic persiflage on the vanities of the art world. At the core of the suggestive satire in the style of a Hollywood trailer stands an overly self-assured do-it-yourself curator, who marvellously fails in the end. The video by the Israeli artist Shahar Marcus was offered by the Braverman Gallery from Tel Aviv in an edition of six and was sold several times.

Another film from Israel gained much attention: Tamir Zadok's complex film narrative “Art Undercover” from 2017. In the ca. 30-minute video the Israeli protagonist, who speaks Arabic fluently, undertakes a research trip to Egypt. His intention is to track down works of the artist Charduval, presumably a Frenchman who had been highly successful in Cairo during the 20th century. However, in the course of the story, the latter turns out to be Shlomo Choen Abravenel. Abravanel was a founding member of the Israeli secret service Mossad. The complex detective story contains plenty of subtle references to the political ties and connections in the Middle East, including the artist’s inner strife of being torn between the Arab and Jewish identity and the enmeshments of the art business in international relations. The Rosenfeld Gallery from Tel Aviv presented this political-humoristic video in their space curated by Maya Frenkel Tene.

The video work “Recorder”, created in 2010 by the Islandic artist Sigurður Guðjónsson, was shown at BERG Contemporary from Reykjavik and also attracted a considerable number of viewers. In the loop one sees an old cine projector with two reels spinning incessantly above a water basin in an old warehouse. The insistent sound of drops falling into water and the mechanical sound of rotating film reels merge to form a musical flow that corresponds to both the visual aesthetics and sombre mood of the images. Sigurður Guðjónsson, born in 1975, is not only known in the experimental art scene, but has also presented his works in an international context in many exhibitions and at festivals.

One of the most innovative videos at the LOOP Fair was “Astronaut Doll”, created in 2017 by the Chinese artist Tang Chau. A marionette-like figure in a space suit wanders about aimlessly in nocturnal Shanghai; the figure roams in a dystopian setting seemingly without any social ties, without backing, without work. An impressive portrait of the nomadic metropolitan no longer integrated in the system. Tang Chau was born in 1990 in Hunan and works in the media video, photography, theatre and performance. He is represented by the Vanguard Gallery in Shanghai.

The Galerie Reinthaler from Vienna presented Lukas Marxt’s six-and-a-half-minute video work “Circular Inscription” from 2016. The setting is the Mojave Desert in California or, more precisely, El Mirage Dry Lake. An old American cruiser with a noisy engine is driving in perpetual circles in the dry and dusty desert, leaving behind tire marks in the sand. Here, the artist references the well-known land art work “Spiral Jetty” by Robert Smithson from the 1960s. In the past decades, the impressive landscape of the Mojave Desert has repeatedly served as a backdrop for Hollywood productions and advertising clips, especially for car advertising.

In the film “Away”, the Iranian artist Parisa Aminolahi tells the story of a young couple emigrating from Iran to the Netherlands. The contrast between a colourful, warm-hearted world in the Middle East and the unhospitable, Calvinistic Holland is described from the perspective of the young woman. The woman, thrown back on herself and constrained to the house, falls into a severe depression - visualized in emphatic, poetic pictures - and thus withdraws into a hallucinatory dreamworld. Parisa Aminolahi was born in Teheran in 1978 and has lived in the Netherlands since 2008. Her works have been shown internationally and are generally concerned with issues of exile, displacement and childhood traumata. She is represented by the Ag Galerie in Teheran.

In the 20-minute video “Not I”, created in 2018, we see an isolated woman’s mouth speaking non-stop. The voice, however, does not belong to the woman who is speaking, and also what she is saying is not coming from her. This irritating discrepancy is in turn reflected by the video’s title. The work by Lúa Coderch from Peru, born in 1985, is based on a theatre piece by Samuel Beckett from 1972, which was staged at the Forum Theater in the Lincoln Center in New York. At the LOOP Fair, it was presented by àngels barcelona.

Altogether around eleven-and-a-half hours of video art were on view at the LOOP Fair 2018 – an intensive load. Owing to the comfortable seating in the hotel rooms and the diversified programme of talks, this trade fair for video art is nonetheless a well-consumable format for insiders, friends and discoverers of the electronic medium.

Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas, 16 Jan 2019

Critics’ Pick: Loop Fair Barcelona 2018 by Nicole Büsing and Heiko Klaas

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