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Press Release

Harun Farocki

Galerie Barbara Weiss presents in this exhibition three new films by Harun Farocki. As filmmaker and artist, he is known for his filmic research of socio-political themes as well as for his investigation into conditions of production and reception of film images.

For the project A New Product (2012), Farocki with his camera accompanied the corporate consultancy firm ‘Quickborner Team’ for over one year. He documents the often-passionate discussions of the Hamburgian staff that envision more flexible and individualized working conditions through the use of new spatial concepts. In this, he reveals with austere reservation the often-constricting yet humorous situations and only impinges on them through a change of scene or order; a commentary is purposefully left out. The result is a bizarre document about fundamental debates regarding our relationship to work in a capitalistic marketplace, in which everything has to continuously become better, quicker and more efficient.

In Parallel (2012) Farocki portrays trends and possibilities of the digital moving image from its beginning in the 1980s to date. Farocki asks, if digital imaging in comparison with film imaging will eventually become the more dominant image category. Can the digital image replace the film image? What consequences will these new reconstructions of reality have on our perception? As he has done before, he once again works here with a double projection as an enhanced montage technique, one that reinforces the comparison between the different medias. Parallel is the first work to be realized in a series of three.

re-pouring (2010) refers to the performance Cycle for Water Buckets (or Bottles) by Fluxus-artist Tomas Schmit. During the performance, Schmit knelt on the floor in a circle of empty milk bottles and poured water from one bottle into the next until all the water had spilled. Drawing on the famous performance of the 1960s, Farocki undertakes the commission for Seven Screens consisting of seven LED-Video-steles in front of the ‘Osram-building’ located in Munich. With the artistic strategy of re-enactment, he questions its currentness and offers his own reinterpretation. Farocki transfers the action into the technical world of today. He works with a whole team of experts of the Institute of Computer Science of the TU Munich. Being followed by seven cameras, a robot takes over the ritual movement of re-pouring and the shape of the milk bottles have been translated for the spatial arrangement of the steles. Experimenting with lightning and positioning led to three variations, one of which is shown here.

Berlin based filmmaker Harun Farocki has in almost 50 years produced over a 100 films and installations and is known today as one of the most renowned German essayist filmmakers. Since the mid 1990s he has been developing large-scale projects for exhibition spaces such as Tate Modern, Jeu de Paume, MoMA in NYC, Sprengel Museum, Museum Ludwig, Kunsthaus Bregenz and many others.

Doerte Achilles