I am pleased to announce the installation "Gras" with the choreographer Georg Blaschke at Odaada Gallery.
Opening November 7, 2014, 7pm (through November 14), Kaiserstrasse 34, 1070 Vienna, Austria
I am pleased to announce the installation "Gras" with the choreographer Georg Blaschke at Odaada Gallery.
Opening November 7, 2014, 7pm (through November 14), Kaiserstrasse 34, 1070 Vienna, Austria
Bildraum Gallery 01 presents a new body of work with the performer Malika Fankha, titled "Verortungen".
Opening July 16, 2014, 7pm (through September 13), Strauchgasse 2, 1010 Vienna, Austria
The installation "Gras" with the choreographer Georg Blaschke is on display at Dance Identity Festival 2014.
Opening May 9, 2014, 7pm (through May 11), Oho Gallery, Lisztgasse 12, 7400 Oberwart, Austria
I am curating an exhibition with Syrian photographers as part of an international conference on the Syrian conflict and the promotion of reconciliation.
Opening February 6, 2014, 1pm (through February 7), Vienna Academy of Fine Arts, Lehárgasse 6-8, 1060 Vienna, Austria
A photo essay on Japanese dance featuring the Butoh artist Ko Murobushi will be published in the February edition of Doc! Photo Magazine (Edition #20).
Taj Hotel and Resorts uses a dance image of Akram Khan Company (Vertical Road) for a world wide and exclusive image campaign. Advertising starts in spring 2014, the campaign is designed for two years.
The Austrian print magazine "Liga der Menschenrechte" publishes a selection of photo work on the situation of refugees in Vienna, Austria. Text (in German) by Claudio Polzer. The release is scheduled for December 2013.
The association Faces for Refugees supports asylum seekers in Austria in their quest for a fair review of their asylum application. Unwilling to accept the hardships most refugees face in this country, I contribute to the platform with photo essays and media work.
The Danube University in Krems, Austria selected me as a jury member for an artist in residency program, exploring modes of interaction between art and science. We invited aspiring photographers from the Danube region, the presentation is scheduled for October 23, 2013.
Only a few more days to go for another dance workshop for children (from 6 - 10 years of age) at the Impulstanz festival, together with the choreographer Gabi Seeleitner. Don't miss it, classes start on Monday, July 29, 2013 at the Dschungel Theatre!
"Gras" is the most recent collaboration with the Austrian choreographer Georg Blaschke. We are proud to present the outcome of our work at the Impulstanz festival 2013.
Opening July 14, 2013, 6.30pm (through August 11), Odeon Theatre, Taborstrasse 11, 1020 Vienna, Austria
I am pleased to announce the upcoming group photo exhibition "Coming of Age" as part of eyes on | Monat der Photographie.
Opening November 9, 2012, 7pm (through November 25, Tue to Sun 2 - 8pm), Bezirksmuseum Amerlinghaus, Stiftgasse 8, 1070 Vienna, Austria
The Austrian choreographer Andrea K. Schlehwein invited me to perform in "Travelogue I_IV". The creation is designed as a multimedia diary on the occasion of the centenary of John Cage's birth.
Premiere October 10, 2012 (through October 12, 13 and 14), Messeplatz 1, 9020 Klagenfurt, Austria
From this autumn on I am a guest teacher at the Advertising Academy in Vienna, Austria. The workshop "Narration in Photography" is taught by Barbara von Rechbach, founder of STUDIO VDR who specializes in Design Fiction and media experience.
"Reframe #1" is my first photographic approach to the idea of eternity and commissioned by the art festival Kunst in der Kartause 2012, situated in a medieval cloister in Aggsdorf, Lower Austria.
Opening September 7, 2012, 6pm (through September 9), Kartause Aggsbach, 3642 Aggsbach, Austria
idocde is designed to develop and document best practices of contemporary dance education, to improve exchange among dance educators and to increase visibility. I am participating in a two year pilot program, a network of educators who meet for dialogue, peer research and the development of an online database.
The annual Impulstanz festival in Vienna is slowly coming up. I am teaching dance and improvisation, together with the choreographer Gabi Seeleitner. The workshop is designed for children with 6 - 10 years of age and titled Living Sculptures. Classes start on Monday, July 30!
I leave to Sri Lanka for an arts in education program, teaching classes in photography at the owf one world foundation, a privately founded school in the South of the island. The program is initiated by the Vienna based foundation Paint for Life.
"Chromolab" and "Chromolab 2.0" are a collaborative work in progress together with the visual artist Victoria Coeln.
Victoria develops light spaces she refers to as chromotopes. Her work condenses and concretizes light and incorporates scientific knowledge as well as the power of emotion and personal encounter. The chromotopes are installed temporarily or permanently in public outdoor and indoor spaces.
We presented Chromolab, a selection of photo and video work with the dancers Caitlyn Carradine and Ziga Jereb at the Donau Universitaet Krems, Austria in July 2010. The structures of light and vice versa the dance movements changed continuously and gave way to experiments with new situations and boundaries.
Victoria and I used analog as well as digital equipment (5' x 4' and mid format, dslr, video) and produced large scale photo prints, collage work and video clips.
Chromolab 2.0 was launched in November 2010 at the annual Monat der Fotografie. Visual artists provided various contemporary positions on photography, the event was titled Salon XV and initiated by FotoK in Vienna. We asked visitors to enter the light space and to create their own individual stories in a playful way. The process was documented with polaroid cameras, a small selection is on display.
Many thanks to Pascal Petignat at FotoK and to the Impossible Project.
Vienna based performer and choreographer Georg Blaschke invited me as a collaborating artist to "The Balanced Room", a series of space occupations on different sites. Participating projects are installation based and address performative questions of oscillation and stand-still, dizziness and balance, transitoriness and the conceivableness of movement in time.
"Gras", the first part of this series, is composed of twelve larger-than-life images of the performer, situated in an on-going installation specially developed for ImPulsTanz #30 in Vienna.
Georg exposes his body to the photographer's eye in several series of Aktionen. The process takes place in different sessions during which the collaborative practice enables further steps into understanding the intrinsic logic of the total work.
The body becomes the underlying ground for serial choreographic arrangements and superimpositions of organic substances, which provoke formal bodily extensions in the images, perceived as inner and outer landscapes.
This setting allows a sensual experience on the borderline of perception and results in an astonishing interplay between image, choreography and action, an intimate dance on the horizon of focus and haziness. The aim is not to display individual sceneries on the surface level but to see the unseen, to inquire what meets the eye underneath the obvious and familiar.
"One of the greatest challenges in today’s culture, urgently necessary from a political point of view, is how to bring analytical skills to bear on the perceptual physiological language of the image, an event and not an object — constantly changing, living and growing." Bill Viola, Unseen Images, 1992
12 C4 Prints in 110 × 165 cm (mounted, limited edition, 2013)
Ko Murobushi is a well known and acclaimed Butoh artist, teaching and performing worldwide. Butoh, influenced by European expressionism, shifted Japanese traditional dance to the artistic avant-garde of the 20th century postwar period.
The founders of Butoh were two revolutionaries of dance, Tatsumi Hijikata and Kazuo Ohno, who fought conventions and rules with the desire to reveal the truth of the human being in life and death. Over the years they developed their individual style of Butoh.
Hijikata explored the transmutation of the human body into other forms, such as those of animals. He also developed a poetic and surreal choreographic language to help the dancer transform into other states of being.
Ohno is described as the soul of Butoh. He once commented on his work: "The best thing someone can say is that while watching my performance they begin to cry. It is not important to understand what I am doing; perhaps it is better if they don't understand, but just respond to the dance." Martin Childs, Kazuo Ohno, 2010
Butoh can involve playful and grotesque imagery, taboo topics, unusual environments, and is traditionally performed in white body makeup with slow controlled motion.
I met Ko Murobushi for the first time in the late 90s and had the opportunity to attend his workshops. Over the years I photographed several of his creations in Europe and Japan, always drawn to his storytelling and exploration of the body.
Ko regularly collaborates with artists from different genres, amongst others the performer Dorothée Munyaneza, Yo Nakamura, Maximo Castro and Jorge Bernal.
It all began in Santiago de Chile with the idea to witness daily life in public space, to capture the perception of common people and reveal the modes and impact of traveling. Traveling can stand for a lot of things, such as moving from place A to B, a group of friends on vacation, migrants forced to give up familiar territory, an audience bodily and mentally following a piece.
The travel from Santiago de Chile ended at the outskirts of Vienna at a place called Macondo, named after Marquez' writing in "Hundred Years of Solitude". Macondo became a place for shelter and home back in the 70s when Chilean refugees fled under Pinochet. The Macondo of today is an ever changing and growing settlement where successive waves of political refugees arrive from the current headlining wars from around the globe. Hidden behind a yellow corrugated iron fence and Walmart like parking lots, there lies a different and unexpected world, somehow misplaced geographically.
We recorded life stories of people based in Macondo, of audience and bystanders, invited or by accident drawn to the ongoing process. Over time, shared perceptions and connecting dots appeared, laid out over individual biographies.
A first presentation was given in May 2007 at TQW Tanzquartier Wien and Macondo as a performative gathering of visitors and inhabitants. The collaboration resumed in 2009 with a new agenda and range of artistic work. Cabula6 was granted a refugee apartment by the Austrian ministry and we lived in Macondo, on and off, for six months. A shipping container, set up on the edge of a soccer field provided a meeting point for a variety of invited artists, the team and residents. Children created their own garden and designed the space according to their means and vision. A map of Macondo was put up at a nearby bus stop, inviting locals to draw with markers their own, memory based landscape. Contributions were integrated into the map design on a regular basis and published with a new billposting.
"Life on Earth" is a collaborative project with Cabula6, an international performance group under the artistic direction of Claudia Heu and Jeremy Xido. The project was named Collectiv of the Year (Category Ensembles) by the German dance magazine Ballettanz (Jahrbuch 09) and received an "Outstanding Artistic Award" - Interkultureller Dialog 2010 by the Austrian Federal Ministry for Education, Arts and Culture (bm:ukk).
The Vienna based foundation "Paint for Life" gave me the opportunity to set up an artist in residency program and provide regular classes in photography at the one world foundation, a private school in Ahungalle, Sri Lanka. The school provides education for about 1000 students and offers courses that are inadequately covered by governmental schools, such as English, Tamil, computer science or graphic design. I taught at the school and mentored the workshops from 2009 - 2013. Due to financial hardships the program is temporarily suspended. Our aim is to proceed in autumn 2014.
I train students enrolled in graphic design and offer hands-on experience in digital photography. The course features photo history, photographic concepts and theory, the role of the analogue/digital media and plenty of practical assignments. Gaining insight when it comes to technical features is half the story, though.
I understand photography in the given context as a tool to train life skills that find little support within local educational structures.
The courses are designed in a workshop like setting with exchange and critical feedback, take place every day and last for eight weeks. Students are encouraged to get actively involved in the process of work and to carry out assignments with curiosity and joy. My aim is to make participants aware of the value of their individual skills in personal and job related matters, to provide means for creation and expression, for understanding a given situation in a different light. In my opinion, awareness is about the way we perceive moments, places and ultimately light, how far we are willing to take in information, to capture and to share. Photography is a powerful media to bring visions across. The photo gallery features a selection of my students' work.
"I seek a state of mind, a closeness to something that I acquire, experience and feel. As a consequence, it escapes and is no longer of interest. My immediacy causes change and manipulation, values are shifted through my presence."
"Verortungen" is the act of situating oneself inside a landscape and the result of an artistic collaboration between the photographer Laurent Ziegler and the performer Malika Fankha.
Both artists deal with the relationship of the individual towards spatial patterns, with the localization of physical and sensual perceptions as imprints on a map, integrated into our experience of the outer landscape.
The endless space of emptiness shifts by only a subtle rupture, a confrontation with the living matter. Insights vary in both, appearance and impact. Scars appear, once unequal forces collide, clash at certain points and reveal an injury to the outside. This exposed damage breaks given structures and shows the confrontation with landscapes as a means for a new situatedness.
Verortungen is accompanied by text and sound sculptures by Malika Fankha (excerpt).
it drops / you drop / dead / it slips / out of your hands / it splits / my world from yours
C4 Prints, limited edition 2014
"Vom Vergessen" is a work in progress with the artist Mirjam Morad. We explore the outer landscape with all our senses, yearn for modes to connect with the inner self, with the image as the key agent in this exchange. "There are windows or wavelengths of perception. They are simultaneous and interwoven at any one moment, but we are tuned only to a certain frequency range." (Bill Viola, Statements, 1985). Mirjam and I search for ways of re-living, re-embodying memory that is within our boundaries of perception.
Mirjam Morad is a Vienna based performer with strong ties to Kazuo Ohno, one of the founders of Butoh, an avant-garde performance art in postwar Japan. We met in 2008 and began collaborating on various themes, related to Butoh.
The Life Ball in Vienna is the largest and probably most spectacular charity event in Europe, supporting people with HIV or AIDS. It attracts strong international interest and attention. Numerous celebrities such as fashion designers, actors, musicians, politicians, and models show their personal committment to the issue.
A growing number of broadcasting stations and media representatives annually cover the event. I began photographing the Life Ball back in 1998 and have been up front for a number of years.
"Reframe #1" is my first photographic approach to the idea of eternity. I was commissioned to work on this theme for the art festival Kunst in der Kartause 2012, situated in a medieval cloister in Aggsbach in Lower Austria. Eternity, in comparison to sempiternity, is understood as infinite and eternal, separated from spacial and time based dimensions and as such free of a beginning and an end, free of progress and change.
My research led me to periodic systems without an inherent ending - such as the tides of the sea, the cycle of life or, as far as we understand it, the expansion and contraction of the universe. Such systems, even though based on a repetitive order, are constantly in a state of transformation. Dealing with the concept of eternity requires the believe in a divine or mathematic entity. Photography barely seems to be able to capture a glimpse of such a dimension and yet, it is the awareness of an image inside the image, an inner truth, that reveals non video a larger picture, felt from the inside.
The french philosopher and critic Roland Barthes referred to the "meditation on the absence inherent in photography". Roland Barthes, Camera Lucida 1980
This series features 12 portraits of people in the state of meditation, in a possible transcendental state, sometimes described as a near death or out of the body experience. The viewer is invited and encouraged to embark on an inner journey. The prints are arranged on the floor in four precise rows. The space above is divided in different segments through white threads, seemingly weightless, an infinite and repetitive cycle, only pinned down to the ground by massive stones, refering to our outer reality.
Many thanks to the protagonists on display and to Gerhard Gensch, the curator of the festival.
12 C4 prints 50 x 100 cm (mounted in hand welded steel frames, limited edition 2012)
I met the Japanese dancer Sengiku Bando in 2005 at a dance conference in Monaco. The year after I visited Japan and accompanied Sengiku-san on a performance tour through Japan and Taiwan. In 2007 I stayed for a full year in Tokyo and we presented "Three", a mixed media dance performance, to the public at BankArt in Yokohama. Sengiku Bando has studied Japanese Traditional Dance since her early childhood and inherited the name of “Sengiku” at the age of 15 at the School of Bando-Ryu, one of the most prestigious institutions of Japanese traditional dance.
From time to time, Sengiku-san performs with the contemporary dancer Ryohei Kondo. His work is based on Bunraku, Japanese traditional marionette theatre. I photographed Ryohei's repertoire at several occasions in Tokyo and Kyoto in 2006.
Caritas Wien initiated the program "Tanz die Toleranz" with the aim to provide regular dance classes and performance venues for people of all ages and countries of origin.
In 2010-11 Tanz die Toleranz presented a selection of performative work in collaboration with the choreographers Janice Parker, Tamara Mclorgwith and Josef Eder at the Palais Kabelwerk in Vienna. The program challenges common prejudices and demonstrates that people can live together if they dance together.
A year before, the British choreographer Royston Maldoom, initiator of numerous community dance projects around the globe, teamed up with Caritas Wien. Royston has worked with young people excluded from education, street kids, people with disability, the displaced, men and women in prison, communities in conflict or marginalised or divided by cultural, religious, social or economic circumstances.
Royston is convinced that dance and performance can transform the lives of individuals and communities by supporting and encouraging cohesion, comprehension, sympathy and dialogue. His work was honoured in 2005 with the project "Rhythm is it". 250 kids performed "Le Sacre du Printemps" by Igor Stravinsky and Simon Rattle conducted the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.
He choreographed for Tanz die Toleranz a piece to "Harmonielehre" by John Adam with 100 children from different social and ethnic backgrounds. The dancers successfully performed in October 2009 at the Gasometer in Vienna.
Laurent Ziegler (MA) was born in Vienna, Austria. He is a freelance photographer with a strong focus on people, performative and documentary work. Laurent studied Political Science at the University of Vienna and Copenhagen. In the 90s, he successfully completed educational programs in contemporary dance and film. Laurent seeks exchanges with dancers and media artists at the interface between performance and documentation. He collaborates with Akram Khan, Ko Murobushi, Georg Blaschke and Eva Petric, amongst others, his work is internationally represented in group and solo exhibitions. Besides, Laurent teaches photography as part of an arts in education program in Sri Lanka and is a member of Bildrecht and Kuenstlerhaus Vienna.
Sozialmarie Award Wien, Irida Award Wien, Outstanding Artistic Award | Interkultureller Dialog, Austrian Federal Ministry for Education, Arts and Culture, px3 Prix de la Photographie Paris, Sotheby's Artlink Open Competition Wien
Village Voice New York, Wired Magazine New York, Bloomsbury Publishers London, Sky Arts UK, Singapore Arts Festival, Austrian Cultural Forum London, MUMOK Museum of Modern Art Vienna, Impulstanz Vienna, Wiener Festwochen, Players Berlin, Hilti Foundation Schaan, Doc! Photo Magazine Warsaw, Zoom Magazine Italy