Potential Versions of the Past and Future
You are going to present your new video Compsognation at PAF. From a teaser available on YouTube, it is possible to get a skeptical/anthropogenic impression. Is it related to the overall topic of the video?
The topic is an issue, and from my point of view (actually through the eyes of the dinosaur Compsognathus) it is a disparagement of clustering on the basis of a language and its categorization, resulting in expulsion. The story leads the way to words, which function as the tools of word systems and are perceived to be the reduction of reality by administrative monsters such as the nation state. I depict the disaster through fiction: dinosaurs became extinct at the moment they stopped using language as a tool of conveying a message, and started to cluster/exclude on that basis.
Your previous works will also be presented, such as Lessons in the Vicious Art of Murder and Getting Pluto. Do they have something in common?
The issue of language categories is an important motive in Lessons in the Vicious Art of Murder. Getting Pluto is a follow-up, yet it is different. What perhaps unifies my work is faith that the narratives are examples which could teach us a lesson and at the same time they carry a message. Not only the videos, but my whole work is a fiction of potential pasts and futures. It conveys allusions to the catastrophic decisions of mankind and emphasizes the issues of the mechanization and administration of contemplation and emotion.
You usually assign a role to yourself in the videos. Is it a part of an artistic statement or pragmatic intent to ease the casting process?
It makes the directorial work easier because I know exactly what I need to do. I don't think it's my intention, I don't define the body of an artist in a particular piece of work (except the older ones such as Telenarcizmus 1–3). It's just a natural connection in which my stories often lose contact with ordinary reality. Therefore I'm more like a bridge and through my mind I can get to the different sides of reality. I hope that not only the words are capable of going beneath the surface.
András Cséfalvay interviewed by Jiří Neděla
ANDRÁS CSÉFALVAY (*1986)
is a visual artist and graduate of the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava. He studied at the Department of Painting and Other Media under Daniel Fischer and at the Multimedia Production Studio, led by Anna Daučíková. In 2009 he was awarded the Oskár Čepan Award for Slovak artists under 35. In his work, which is often in the form of video art, he focuses on the issues of the mechanization and administration of meditation and emotion. At PAF, Cséfalvay will present his three videos including the new one Compsognation.