The work of Josef Bolf (1971) is mainly accessible through his captivating paintings and drawings. At PAF, he will present five new videos that have been shown at his exhibitions over the last several years. Videos with motifs of performance, radio plays and classic puppet films are all part of Bolf’s artistic world, with various features of animation and stories within stories.
Samson Kambalu (1975) is a native of Malawi, Africa. His life and his attitude towards art were formed by his early experience with the cinema of attractions, the solipsistic nature of the Chewa tribe and his father’s “philosophical lectures.”
As an author he is active within various media, such as sitespecific installations, drawings, paintings, videos, performances and literature. His work typically contains autobiographical elements and is strongly influenced by situationism, excess, humour and wit; all of which he uses as tools for his constant examination of the boundaries of history, art, human identity, religion and the freedom of the individual.
He is the author of two awardwinning publications, an autobiographical novel The Jive Talker or, How to Get a British Passport (2008) and Uccello’s Vineyard (2012), a fictitious narrative situated in the Middle Ages that is about photography and art and uses the detournement technique. Kambalu currently lives and works in GB.
Portuguese filmmaker and visual artist Pedro Maia collaborates with numerous musicians across the rock and electronic scenes. He is a part of a younger generation that builds upon the tradition of Expanded Cinema and expands the aesthetic and technological “heritage” of classic film procedures of working with 16mm and 8mm material. Pedro Maia will present a selection of his work in an individual presentation and will perform with British musician Vessel on their audio-visual event, which is thematically connected to the recording Punish, Honey (Tri Angle, 2014). Slovakian musician Jonatán Pastirčák praises Vessel’s music for its “delicate production and disharmony. Every sound has its specific space and character. Maybe that is what adds the inimitable atmosphere to his compositions; it feels as if he accidentally found himself at the warehouse party gig of a band of robotic skeletons playing instruments handmade from various metal scraps and wires found in an abandoned factory.” Vessel publishes at Tri Angle Records and Young Echo.
Tokyo based artist Takashi Makino (1978) has studied in the atelier of the Quay Brothers in London. Creatively, he moves between exhibitions and film and music festivals. In his work, he combines both classic and digital film technologies. Besides his own musical production, he often collaborates with American musician and producer Jim O’Rourke, Dutch creator Machinefabriek and others. Space Noise 3D performance is created by combining and interweaving the visual outputs of a 16mm projector and a data projector. The effort to physically represent the image before it touches the screen flows through the noise performance, where the author also creates the sound. The viewers watch the resulting image via 3D glasses.
The Berlin-based Norwegian artist and musician Lars TCF Holdhus will perform aquadrophonic “composition” for a baroque chapel. Jonatán Pastirčák describes Holdhus’ work as “unpredictably flowing ambient soundscapes that meet abstract rhythmic structures, so as to create impressive sonic landscapes full of surprising moments and sound accidents.” The randomness of Holdhus’ music comes out of his fascination in encryption and computer algorithms – the name of every track is a sequence of numbers and letters, same as the name of the performance prepared for PAF itself. It is of no use to divide the piece Aedrhlsomrs Othryutupt Lauecehrofn into visual and musical projects, since they are very tightly connected, they develop on similar motifs and the only difference is the presentation media, similar to the anagram of the name.
American animator and visual artist Jonathan Monaghan uses computer animation to further develop the bond between moving images and physically existing objects. His artworks are often created by combining 3D prints with noble materials. At PAF, Monaghan will present, in his own screening block Animated Worlds, a selection of videos that create a quite complex mythopoetic world. It is a world derived from the transformations of luxurious spaces, from the modified symbolism connected to animal archetypes and power. Motifs with elements of baroque and rococo ornaments subsequently appear in physically existing objects. Architecture of Fantasy is the title of the presentation in which the author will reveal his inspirational sources and work methods in more detail.
Greg Pope is a British filmmaker. At PAF he will introduce his own film production and a new live performance. The performance was created together with the Czech music project Salvia, which consists of the visual artist Veronika Vlková and Czech musician Kateřina Koutná (Makak). The performance is built on a sequence of permeating slides, which are divided according to the content into separate thematic chapters. An instrumental and vocal component of performance completes the overall, epic nature of the performance. In the long term, Greg Pope engages in performative approaches in the field of live cinema. Currently, he works in Oslo, Norway, and his film production involves the work with different technologies and materials.
Artist and musician Stanislav Abrahám’s live performance will consist of the presentation of his last record Shapescapes, which combines synthetic sounds and ambient recordings, and the audiovisual project Spectral Scenery, based on a system of oscillating sound loops programmed by the artist and accompanied by images.
Pražská postpunková kapela, za níž stojí snsbr, Dizzcock a Head in Body (a jehož členkou byla donedávna také VJka AKa 47), kombinuje rytmy soudobé taneční hudby s britským industriálem. Je výraznou součástí současné experimentální hudební scény. Inspiruje se kapelami jako Throbbing Gristle, Coil nebo Suicide. Letos v létě vydala své třetí album s názvem Radical Zoo.
Americký hudebník žijící v Praze. Známý především ze synthpopově laděného hudebního projektu Former Ghost, produkujícího emoční hudbu s osobními tématy, ve kterém se střídají různí hudebníci. Nyní se věnuje experimentálnější elektronické tvorbě, kterou vydává pod vlastním jménem. Mezi spřízněné projekty a kolegy patří Xiu Xiu nebo Zola Jesus.
Zvuková umělkyně a hudební skladatelka Ryoko Akama přibližuje ve svých kompozicích, které často pracují s psaným textem, estetiku ticha, času a prostoru. Se starými syntezátory ohledává zvukovou performance a kromě toho vytváří také instalace s drobnými objekty a elektronikou. Akama se zabývá kvalitou minimální, reduktivní a abstraktní sonické zkušenosti. Provozuje label melange edition a je spolueditorkou časopisu Reductive Journal. V současnosti je spolu s Montym Adkinsem a Phillipem Thomasem doktorandkou na Univerzitě v Huddersfieldu, kde spoluorganizuje HudHack (DIY elektronický workshop) a re.sound (koncertní série).
David Ferrando Giraut se ve své umělecké tvorbě zaměřuje především na práci s videem a zvukem. Kombinuje několik témat, jako je hybridizace přírodních prvků, vztah technologie a společensko-politických organizací, napětí mezi reprezentací a zobrazovanou realitou. Autor zpochybňuje moderní pojetí temporálnosti a navrhuje hledání kontinuity skrze pojmy transverzality, proustovské reminiscence, úpadku a jeho podobnosti s audiovizuálním záznamem. David Ferrando Girraut je absolventem londýnské Godsmith Colledge. V roce 2010 absolvoval postgraduální kurz LUX Associate Artists Programme v Londýně.
Lucy Railton používá jako hlavní médium své práce zvuk – její zdrojový materiál často tvoří nahrávka cella. Zajímá ji úloha odkazu a tradice především v oblasti živých vystoupení. Coby interpret je aktivní v elektronických, improvizovaných a moderních klasických formách. Je spoluředitelkou a kurátorkou Londýnského festivalu současné hudby.
Rebecca Salvadori je výtvarnicí žijící v Londýně, která se svými videopracemi snaží podvracet dominantní technologie. V současnosti se ve svém díle orientuje na podstatu digitálních obrazů a jejich dopad na recepci. Většina jejích videí jsou vizuální kompozice založené na náhodných objevech. Prostřednictvím zpomalených výrobních postupů se snaží osvobodit od mechanického přístupu často spojovaného se současnou digitální produkcí audiovizuálu.
Paul Emery is an associate senior lecturer in the Faculty of Arts, Environment and Technology at Leeds Beckett University and he is also the director of Seen. Seen is a digital design studio and collaborative research platform engaged in the fields of graphic, motion and installation design via computational and process orientated methods. Outputs have ranged from large scale projection systems and generative media to experimental film and educational workshops. Their work has been featured at Sonar, Cannes Lyons, Chicago Experimental Film Fest and Onedotzero.
Joe Gilmore (1968) is a multidisciplinary artist and graphic designer working in the fields of computer music, video and algorithmic art. His work has been published on various music labels including 12k and LINE (NYC), Fällt (Belfast), Cut (Zürich), Alku (Barcelona), Melange (Sendai), Entr'acte (London) and Leonardo Music Journal (San Francisco). Gilmore is co-creator of rand()%, an automated internet radio station which streams realtime generative/algorithmic music and founder of Qubik, a type-focused design studio in London.
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.
It seems to me as an over-analysing viewer, that your works, via "low-resolution simulation", using analog-digital intermixes, combining analogue and digital media when creating digital imagery, even the use of ASCII art, drive our attention towards the two-dimensional surface of the image, as opposed to "absolute" simulacra qualities that are imposed on us in "mainstream" HD images. Are you aware of this effect as an author, maybe intentionally developing it, or shall I take it just as side effect of the psychedelic bliss I get from your videos?
Lo-fi aesthetic is definitely intentional. All these high end special effects we see in mainstream movies and TVs are great. But those look cold and too perfect. I absolutely don't care to make things like that because I make art, not commercial work. I like the idea of creating things that are in complete opposite spectrum of so called 'mainstream' visuals.
ONE SECOND IN THE LIFE OF JULIA ROBERTS
25 monitors substitute 25 film frames of a decomposed one-second shot of an actress whose name is synonymous with Hollywood productions. The frames are of Julia Roberts when she was a guest star in the iconic television series Friends. The viewers – walkers through your installation – perceive the "one-second portrait" as a long series of portraits
It depends on what we want to learn from that second. If well chosen, a second can even work as a mini teaser. It can become a sort of 25-sheet poster. It also works the other way round. If you know the whole film, a single "key" second can reactivate your memory of the film as a whole. After seeing a second of a scene of blood mixed with water flowing down the shower drain, you can "fill in" the rest; the stuffed animals, the dried up mother etc.
Under certain circumstances, a second can also represent an autonomous artwork, whether cut from an existing film or shot anew for a specific purpose. However, its information value does not necessarily depend on the original film; it does not have to relate to it any more. It can speak for itself.
COLOURS AND COMPUTATIONS OF IMAGE
Your first artworks are paintings and drawings; what was the main reason for you to start using film, or generally the moving image technologies?
When making relief paintings in the sixties, I ended up, in 1968, writing a computer programme to help me complete the organisation of a work. This really alerted me to the importance of procedures and processes and it was not long before I wanted to know what the implications of computation were for art. I started to explore them directly and also in terms of how I approached making drawings and paintings. I was always interested in music and film and so I started exploring time, in particular. I made a film in 1973 that was done the hard way, implementing my structures with a pair of scissors. I am not sure how good it was. In the early 1980s, when I started to work with personal computers I saw that I could build structures in time and have the computer realise them. It was like a move from making a series of pictures (which was quite common then) to making film. It was not long before I realised that I need not use the film paradigm of frames with a beginning and an end. I could make generative 'films' that went on changing forever, with no stored frames but with the images created as they were seen. My early interest in interaction soon came into play also, because interaction could change the generative rules, and so on.