On the occasion of the publication of the monography Stefan Panhans – 5 Videos by the publishing compny Merz & Solitude, the Künstlerhaus Stuttgart will present the video programme Stage of Desire in cooperation with the Merzakademie. Within seven screened videos, ten artists depict desire as dialectic counterpart of recognition and study the procurance of emotions. The overlap of fiction and reality is a mutual subject such as the questionning of the medium film.
Keren Cytter: Der Spiegel (2007), 4:30 min
Der Spiegel shows the naked body of a 42 year old protagonist who is drawn by the illusion of being a sixteen year old girl, loved by the man she wants. Her sense of self is quickly destroyed by a mirror. A choir – symbolising the voice of the mass – comments on her confessions of love: “Subtitles: and young bodies are better than an old woman.”. The theatrical staging of the highly concentrated situation takes place in a nearly empty room with no stage props but a mirror and the camera itself. The gazes and comments of the others appear as social instances.
Stefan Panhans: If a store clerk gave me too much change (2009), 15 min
In If a store clerk gave me too much change the camera focusses a collage of a room filled with numerous requisites and a weirdly dressed protagonist positioned in its centre. Stefan Panhans’ character speaks out quotes from guidebooks for lifes and careers, supported by two actresses. The slogans exaggerate the unlimited devotion of the flexible neoliberal worker to life-long learning. Beyond the means of imagination, the words loose their representational sense.
Ming Wong: Angst Essen (2008), 27 min
The title of Ming Wong’s film refers to one of the best-known works of Rainer Werner Fassbinder, Angst essen Seele auf with Brigitte Mira. The social drama shapes the portrait of Germany in the 70ies and focusses on suppressed problems like xenophobia, a lack of justice, conflicts between old and young generations and alienations in the workaday life, which are contemporary issues. Playing every role himself, Wong patterned every scene of Fassbinder’s film. With this self-experiment, where protagonists played by the same actor are confronted with animosity and predjudice, the director creates a strongly artificial atmosphere that works as a homage and mockery of the original.
Ho Tzu-Nyen: The Bohemian Rhapsody Project (2006), 5:52 min
The Bohemian Rhapsody Project is a staged casting for a fictitious film, based on the lyrics of the song Bohemian Rhapsody (1975) by Queen. In a former court room a selection of 22 professional and non-professional artists are invited to an audition in front of an audience of further actors and the film crew. The film only shows this audition, cut down to the full length of the song. Among the spoken lines and occassional musical insertions, the video takes the spectator back to his memories of the disco pop classic
Eske Schlüters: After the Rehearsal (2008), 7:30 min
The film shows sample recordings of the actress Delphine Seyrig, originated from the making-of Chantal Akerman’s Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975). These sequences and further isolated film scenes constitute an observations of forms of rehearsal, which are intensed by the use of theatre theoretical texts.
Judith Hopf, Deborah Schamoni, Clemens Schönborn: Elevator Curator (2005), 22 min
The former French minister of culture travels to Istanbul in her new profession as European curator for contemporary art to render an expert opinion on an exhibition of three fellowship holders. Surprised by her arrival the artists make big efforts to improvise an exhibition. Meanwhile, Elodie Schneider experiences a personality change. Elevator Curator was drafted and produced as part of the mutual soap opera Ping Pong D´Amour: Der Aufbruch.