HaFI 018 – Skip Norman: On Africa. Skip Norman. Harun Farocki Institut; Motto Books

Posted in critique, film, history, Motto Books, writing on November 17th, 2023
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

HaFI 018 reprints a document containing the script of Skip Norman’s film On Africa (1970). Norman, born in Baltimore in 1933, had left the U.S. in the early 1960s to study German, theater, and medicine in Göttingen. In 1966 he moved to Berlin to join the newly founded German Film and Television Academy (DFFB). By 1969, he had made the films Riffi (1966), Blues People (1968), Cultural Nationalism (1969) and the graduation film Strange Fruit (1969). He shot On Africa together with Joey Gibbs after graduating from the school. The filmmaker about his film: “The starting point is the relationship between Europe’s prosperity and Africa’s poverty; Europe’s destruction of societies and cultures, and the simultaneous use of Christianity and racial theories as justification for a massive exploitation of the colonized.” On Africa was first shown at the Festival in Mannheim in 1970 and then broadcast on television by WDR in 1972.
The script is accompanied by images from the film, and followed by five short commentaries by Sónia Vaz Borges, Madeleine Bernstorff, Marie-Hélène Gutberlet, Tom Holert, and Volker Pantenburg.

Das Heft enthält das Skript für Skip Normans Film On Africa (1970). Norman, 1933 in Baltimore geboren, hatte die USA zu Beginn der 1960er Jahre verlassen, um in Göttingen Deutsch, Theaterwissenschaft und Medizin zu studieren. 1966 zog er nach Berlin, um an die neugegründete Deutsche Film- und Fernsehakademie Berlin (DFFB) zu wechseln. Bis 1969 entstanden die Filme Riffi (1966), Blues People (1968), Cultural Nationalism (1969) und der Abschlussfilm Strange Fruit (1969).
On Africa entstand gemeinsam mit Joey Gibbs nach Normans DFFB-Abschluss. In Normans Worten: „Der Ausgangspunkt dieses Films ist das Verhältnis zwischen Europas Wohlstand und Afrikas Armut; Europas Zerstörung von Gesellschaften und Kulturen, und gleichzeitiger Einsatz von Christentum und Rassentheorien als Rechtfertigung einer gewaltigen Ausbeutung der Kolonialisierten.“ On Africa wurde am 7. Oktober 1970 bei der XIX. Internationalen Filmwoche Mannheim in der „Informationsschau“ aufgeführt; 1972 lief der Film im WDR.
Das Skript wird begleitet von zahlreichen Bildern aus dem Film und kontextualisiert durch fünf Kurzessays von Sónia Vaz Borges, Madeleine Bernstorff, Marie-Hélène Gutberlet, Tom Holert und Volker Pantenburg.

Order here

All The Beauty And The Bloodshed (Special edition). Soundwalk Collective. Analogue Foundation

Posted in film, music, photography, Vinyl on November 11th, 2023
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

LIMITED ART EDITION WITH ORIGINAL ART PRINT FROM NAN GOLDIN, SIGNED BY THE ARTIST 

Laura Poitras’ Oscar-nominated film »All the Beauty and the Bloodshed« is an epic, emotional and interconnected story about internationally renowned artist and activist Nan Goldin. Told through intimate interviews, photography, and footage, central to the story is her personal fight to hold the Sackler family accountable for the opioid crisis. The film cuts to the bone with its incandescent celebration of life and condemnation of those who threaten it. Art and activism are one and the same. 

Helping to interweave Goldin’s past and present, multi-disciplinary duo Soundwalk Collective soundtrack her personal and political struggles to sublime effect. The contemporary sonic arts platform of founder and artist Stephan Crasneanscki and producer Simone Merli, the pair work with a rotating constellation of artists and musicians, developing site-and-context-specific sound projects through which to examine conceptual, literary, or artistic themes. And for all the beauty and the bloodshed on show here, the duo strike the balance just right; their compositions in collaboration with Zacharias Falkenberg and Johannes Malfatti producing a trance that oscillates between grace and madness. 

Within the score, Crasneanscki draws connections with the life and work of German poet Friedrich Hölderlin, who was removed from society through confinement in institutions. In his last poems, written as fragments while he was plagued by mental illness, Hölderlin renders nature, in all its fragility and ephemerality. Similar themes merge in Laura’s portrait of Goldin and serve as an inspiration for the composition of the choral songs and cantus within the soundtrack. Through the repetition of words and the layering of voices, the lyric scansion operates like a language possessed, echoing various styles from sacred music to modern minimalist techniques. The music is characterised by quivering strings and swells, de-tuning and lingering, shifting around the surreal, and creating a spectrum of musical experience. Exerts of Nan’s narration are featured in two of the tracks, her powerful narration offering a more direct approach to the storytelling. 

In »All the Beauty and the Bloodshed,« Poitras shows protest is really Goldin’s great artwork: Her entire life had been leading to this moment of passionate expression, an inspired situationist gesture which fused the personal and the political. Art can change the world, which Poitras and Goldin tell us with powerful results. While there are multiple threads in this remarkable portrait which could have carried entire films, the soundtrack provides a sonic identity that helps keep track of proceedings. Utterly unique in their approach, Soundwalk Collective have delivered a gripping and thoughtful score, helping turn Goldin’s personal pain into culture-rattling impact.

A1 Half Of Life
A2 Schimmer Sanft Den Klang Des Tages
A3 The Land And The Sea
A4 Sisters I – Feat. Nan Goldin
A5 Des Geistes Werden
B1 Before The Light
B2 Witnesses
B3 Zeitgeist
B4 To Zimmer
B5 Sisters Ii – Feat. Nan Goldin

Order here

Tasman Richardson + Jubal Brown. Saturday May 13 @ Motto Berlin.

Posted in film, Motto Berlin event, Motto Berlin store on May 11th, 2023
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Dear friends,

Motto is pleased to invite you to the film screening and double book presentation of

Objects in Mirror 
by Tasman Richardson 
Published by Impulse [b], 2023

Tasman Richardson is his memory of screens. Video from cathode ray to capacitive pixels shapes his language, directs his understanding, and ultimately borders his imagination. Building on McLuhan’s statement “We become what we behold”, Richardson shuttles through the history of tele-vision and tele-presence, postulating consciousness itself as Gysin-esque “cut-up” collage. Fragmented, digressive, and occasionally manic, Objects In Mirror refracts autoethnography into a technicolour meditation on our mediated world. An intimate and humourous technical-mystical delving into a distrust of all things perceived both in life and art.

&

DIE SCUM: Sex & Drugs & Contemporary Art
by Jubal Brown 
Published by Impulse [b], 2023

DIE SCUM, Sex & Drugs & Contemporary Art is the debut novel by artist and iconoclast Jubal Brown, a post-post-modern love story of the drug dealer to the art scene and his paranoid deluge through alcoholic-depression to redemption and personal agency. A 60,000 word auto-fiction confessional of addiction, to drugs and alcohol but, ultimately an examination of addiction to dysfunctional relationships, unhealthy ideals and behaviours, the performance of identity, and the failure of masculinity.

The reading will be followed by film screenings of Richardson and Brown’s video work.

Tasman Richardson & Jubal Brown have been producing video work, sometimes collaborating, for 25+ years, originating in the 1990s with a unique high energy style of experimental video: A/V, audio-visual, or visual music – also known as JAWA, the recombinant montage of appropriated television&movies treated as raw material, sampled and remixed to build compositions engaging the lexicon of contemporary media culture.

This short program will showcase a selection of video work from the past and present.

About the authors: 

Tasman Richardson 

Tasman Richardson began pioneering his audio/visual cut up method known as Jawa in 1996, later co-founding FAMEFAME media arts collective in 2002, co-creating international a/v tournament Videodrome with cohorts Jubal Brown, Elenore Chesnutt, and Josh Avery, and launching abstract, anonymous live showcase The New Flesh in 2011. His critique of mediated gaze through installation debuted with 2,000 square foot Necropolis (Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto, 2012) and bookended with Kali Yuga (Arsenal Contemporary, Montreal, 2019, and Toronto, 2021). Objects In Mirror (2023, Impulse[b]) is his first book, and continues his critical response to recordings which he dubs “contemporary necromancy.”

Jubal Brown 
Jubal Brown is a producer and presenter of contemporary art & events culture, and writer based in Toronto, Canada. A/V video-maker of over 50 short works screened or performed in Toronto, New York, Paris, London, etc. Brown has programmed with established institutions and underground venues including ART SYSTEM, GALLERY DEATH FAMEFAME, PLEASUREDOME,  Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (Now MOCA ) DOUBLE DOUBLE LANDCINECYCLE , and many more. Past projects include Toronto’s legendary event series at abandoned industrial sites WASTELAND… museum vomit intervention RESPONDING to ART, The Cultural Centre ART SYSTEM, multi-media label FAMEFAME, relational aesthetics collaborative The LAND of the LOST, the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art’s live audio/visual event series VIDEODROME and the rhythmic noise club night SHIT FUN. In Canadian Art Magazine R.M. Vaughan called him “the dark prince of Toronto art.” Vocationally a Social Service Worker and Addictions Counsellor Brown’s current work deals with addiction, dysfunctional relationships, depression and mental health issues, as well as an extreme individualist canon of iconoclasm, revolution, and nihilism, love and anger, resistance and freedom. His first novel DIE SCUM Sex & Drugs & Contemporary Art is available in paperback and e-book at IMPULSE-b , publisher of artists’ books and multiples.

HaFI 017 – Karolin Meunier: Aller-retour et aller. On “Wanda” and “Supplément à la vie de Barbara Loden”. Karolin Meunier. Harun Farocki Institut & Motto Books

Posted in books, Cinema, film, Motto Books on February 23rd, 2023
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

In 2019, Karolin Meunier presented the performance Aller-retour et aller for the first time at Arsenal Cinema in Berlin. This was followed by a screening of the film Wanda (1970) by Barbara Loden, one of the most important works of independent filmmaking by female directors. For HaFI 017, Meunier documents her performance script. Among other references, she engages with Nathalie Léger’s book Supplément à la vie de Barbara Loden (2012) by translating text excerpts in dialogue with a friend. In this essayistic novel, Léger follows the traces of the film in her search for the actress and director Barbara Loden.

In HaFI 017: Aller-retour et aller, Meunier’s artistic gestures of experimental translation echoes the intertwining of these three women’s quest by dissolving the biographies of the film character, the actress, and the novelist: “A woman telling her own story through that of another woman.” (Nathalie Léger). The pamphlet includes an afterword by Clio Nicastro.

Order here

Album: Cinémathèque de Tanger. Omar Berrada and Yto Barrada (Eds.). Librairie des Colonnes Éditions; la Virreina Centre de la Imatge

Posted in books, Cinema, film on February 9th, 2023
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Album is a short illustrated history of film in Tangier, and of Tangier on film, told through the stories and archives of the Cinémathèque de Tanger, North Africa’s first art house cinema.

With contributions by Philippe Azoury, Ahmed Boughaba, Edgardo Cozarinsky, Carles Guerra, Bouchra Khalili, Luc Sante

Order here

The Sky is Falling. Lorenza Mazzetti. Another Gaze Editions

Posted in art, books, film on December 12th, 2022
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

First published in 1961, Lorenza Mazzetti’s The Sky is Falling (Il cielo cade) is an impressionistic, idiosyncratic, and uniquely funny look at the writer’s childhood after she and her sister are sent to live with their Jewish relatives following the death of their parents. Bright and bucolic, vivid and mournful, and brimming with saints, martyrdom, ideals, wrong-doing and self-imposed torments, the novel describes the loss of innocence and family under the Fascist regime in Italy during World War II through the eyes of Mazzetti’s fictional alter ego, Penny, in sharp, witty (and sometimes petulant) prose.

First translated into English as The Sky Falls by Marguerite Waldman in 1962, with several pages missing due to censorship, the novel has been out of print in the anglophone world for many years. We are proud to reissue the text in a beautiful new translation by Livia Franchini that carries over the playfulness and perverse naivete of the original Italian.

Il cielo cade is so much more than just a book about the horrors of the Second World War. It is as much a loving homage to the picture-perfect childhood Mazzetti’s aunt and uncle provided for her and her sister before circumstances beyond their control overwhelmed them, and thus also a moving portrait of the cruel loss of childhood innocence” – Lucy Scholes, The Paris Review

LORENZA MAZZETTI (1928 – 2020) drew, made films, wrote novels and towards the end of her life ran a puppet theatre in Rome.

Mazzetti first discovered filmmaking in the U.K.. Upon arriving in London in the late 1940s, Mazzetti was admitted in unconventional style to the Slade (the day before term began and having not enrolled, she went to the director and told him she was a genius) and swapped her sketchbook for celluloid after finding some film equipment in the school’s store cupboard. She was the first woman to receive public funding in the UK for her film Together (1956), which was presented as part of the first Free Cinema programme at the National Film Theatre in 1956 alongside films by Lindsay Anderson, Tony Richardson and Karel Reisz.

When Mazzetti returned to Italy in the late 1950s, she gave up filmmaking and turned to writing. Her first novel, Il cielo cade (1961) was awarded the prestigious Premio Viareggio prize, and still appears on the Italian school curriculum.

Order here

Constantin Flondor. When Eye Touches Cloud. Alina Șerban (Ed.). P+4 Publications

Posted in art, Artist Book, books, film, Monograph, painting, photography, Uncategorized on October 10th, 2022
Tags: , , , , , , ,

When Eye Touches Cloud is the first monograph dedicated to the manifold oeuvre of Romanian artist Constantin Flondor (born 1936, in Czernowitz), the leading protagonist of the art groups 111, Sigma and Prolog. This richly illustrated publication takes a closer look on the influential body of work he had produced in painting, kinetic & Op art, land art, action, experimental film & photography from the 1960s until today. It surveys the various steps of his practice: from the lyricism of the first pictorial constructs to the optical and kinetic art of the Group 111, from the study of form and land art characteristic of the Sigma Group, defined as the effort to connect within a single equation visual research and experiment, to the Prolog Group’s spirit of communion and conviviality.

The book offers a comprehensive overview of the principles that shape Constantin Flondor’s art, of reflecting and theorising starting from the inventory of terms, themes, and concepts that have guided him as an artist over seventy years of uninterrupted work and of restoring them to the international context of art through the contributions of invited authors, Dieter Roelstraete & Abigail Winograd, Rainer Fuchs, and Katarzyna Cytlak. Besides the commissioned essays, the book includes a selection from the artist writings and several archival materials which enlarge our view on artist’s singular mode of thinking.

*
P+4 Publications is an independent publishing programme dedicated to the promotion of Romanian contemporary art, photography and architecture, exploring the book medium as a point of encounter between theoretical research, graphic design experiment and artists’ ideas and subjects present in their practice. Presently, the programme brings together the Artist Book Series and the Architecture Book Series, supported between 2013–2021 by the PEPLUSPATRU Association, and Parkour and Exhibition-Dossier series, developed by the Institute of the Present since 2017. Starting from 2021, P+4 Publications is coordinated by the Institute of the Present.

Order here

Screening 12.11.2021 @ Motto Berlin – Giselle’s Books presents a selection of Inventory’s films

Posted in art, critique, film, Motto Berlin event, video on November 8th, 2021
Tags: , , , , ,

Beton Insel Inventory_Giselle's Books_Motto Books_2021

Beton Insel, Inventory, 2004, Courtesy of the artists

Giselle’s Books and Motto invite you to the screening of Inventory’s film. For the occasion, we will be showing the following videos: Ostalgia (2004), Beton Insel (2004), Sleepwalkers (2003) and Flesh and Stone, a geology of an Urban Existence (2003).
Friday, 12 November 2021 at 7pm

First Screening at 7:15
Second Screening at 8:15

Motto Berlin
Skalitzer Str. 68, im Hinterhof
10997 Berlin

British art collective Inventory was founded in London in 1995 by Damian Abbott, Paul Claydon and Adam Scrivener. Since 2004, they are based in Kent (UK) and Toulouse (France).
Inventory’s previous solo exhibitions were at the Rob Tufnell gallery, London (2014 and 2016) White Columns, New York (2005); The Approach, London (2004, 2002 and 1999) and at The Modern Institute, Glasgow (1999). Recent collective exhibitions include: Condo London, Rob Tufnell (2018); The Revolutionary Suicide Mechanised Regiment Band, Rob Tufnell, Cologne (2016); Corruption Feeds, Bergen Kunsthall (2014); Make the Living Look Dead, 2nd Cannons Project Space, Los Angeles (2014); Ruin Lust, Tate Britain (2014); Keywords, INIVA (2013); A journey through London’s subculture, the ICA at Old Selfridges Hotel, London (2013), De Appel, Amsterdam (2008); Kunstverein Hamburg (2007); Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade (2007); Kunsthaus Dresden (2006); Aspen Art Museum (2006); Portikus, Frankfurt (2004); ICA, London (2003); Whitechapel Gallery, London (2003); Lenbachhaus, Munich (2002); the Courtauld Institute of Art, London (2001); their work is held in the collections of the Centre Pompidou, Paris and the Tate Gallery, London. Their work is represented by Rob Tufnell.

Giselle is conceived as a system for enabling interactions that focuses on the dissemination and gathering of artistic practices. It was conceived by Lucas Jacques-Witz and Ryder Morey-Weale as an experimental exhibition space and currently operates as Giselle’s Books, an independent Archive Library of foreign Artist’s Books, editions, and printed material in Marseille. The space is dedicated to researchers and amateurs with an interest in contemporary art books.

Eye of the Tiger. Oscar Guermouche. Praun & Guermouche

Posted in art, Artist Book, film, photography on September 10th, 2021
Tags: , , , , ,

eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-1 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-2 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-3 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-4 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-5 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-6 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-7 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-8 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-9 eye-of-the-tiger-oscar-guermouche-praun-guermouche-9789198524468-10

The artist’s publication Eye of the Tiger is composed of close-ups of the eyes of 99 male characters from various films. The stills portray the characters in situations where they are driven into some sort of readiness; these stares express everything from controlled calm to furious aggression. The films were all released between 1977 and 2000, the formative years of Guermouche’s childhood and coming of age, including schooling, sexual debut and military service.

The black wooden pattern on the cover, along with the blackened edges and the deep black endpapers, are reminiscent of the installations in the form of barricades that Guermouche has created in recent years, for example the work “You Made Me” (ICIA, 2016) in Gothenburg. The dust jacket is made out of Swedish kraft paper, which draws ammunition packaging to mind. The metallic foiling refers to the machine as a male ideal, and to the steely-eyed stare. The black-and-white images with their graininess and deep black, give the impression of memories rather than direct depictions.

Order here

Richard Maxwell and New York City Players: The Theater Years

Posted in art, books, curating, film, Motto Berlin store, Motto Books, video on September 6th, 2019
Tags: , , , ,

richard-maxwell-and-new-york-city-players-the-theater-years_Motto_1 richard-maxwell-and-new-york-city-players-the-theater-years_Motto_2richard-maxwell-and-new-york-city-players-the-theater-years_Motto_3richard-maxwell-and-new-york-city-players-the-theater-years_Motto_4richard-maxwell-and-new-york-city-players-the-theater-years_Motto_5richard-maxwell-and-new-york-city-players-the-theater-years_Motto_6

This is the first publication on the plays of New York–based experimental theater director and playwright Richard Maxwell (born 1967) and his company New York City Players. His plays have been commissioned by The Wexner Center, Columbus; The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Performance Space 122, The Kitchen and Soho Rep in New York; and The Barbican Centre, London. The book captures the experience of actually watching the plays by way of screen-grabs and captions, and in doing so documents nearly 20 years of work.

Text by Jim Fletcher, Emily Hoffman, Richard Maxwell, Robert Snowden.
Published by Westreich Wagner and Greene Naftali.

 

€45.00

Buy it here