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Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work, 1996-2002

Series of five SD Videos

Episodes of a society free of work is a project in progress which presents different episodes that take place in a studio, an amusement park, a shopping mall and an office building. All of the episodes deal with the very conception of work and also of its obsolescence and the way in which it manifests itself in the city – centred around deconstructive trends in the very conception of work as a (nowadays unbelievable) rehabilitation of the Utopia of freedom obtained through work – as it has been known since the Enlightenment.

It is said that this Utopia emerged with the machine-like architecture of the 1960s, but it seems more likely that it arose out of a disciplinary, militaristic mentality. Now, in the socalled post-Fordism period, the architecture of our glossy shopping malls and leisure centres can be deliberately misinterpreted. A slight change of perspective – or a little ignorance regarding the basic safety standards – would permit a state of affairs in which the evolutional trend in technology could come to represent the promise of rationalised work: not to create employment, but freedom from work. In fact, it seems that everything is ready: the shopping malls, the generously designed leisure areas, the small supermarkets with their climate of artificial oases – all that remains is to take care of a minute organisational detail, the redistribution of social wealth, in order to create logically a vision of intriguing reality. All of the episodes were filmed between 1996 and 2001, with the collaboration of friends who were interested in this theme.

Alice Creischer, Um sie erneut zu erwerben / ...To earn it again (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1996, SD video, 4:3, color, silent, 5:21 minutes

The first episode takes place in a melancholy amusement park in Berlin. The park has a ghostlike air because there is no music or lights, not the slightest element of entertainment. We only hear the cries of the riders and the noises of the machines. It all makes us think, inevitably, of a factory. The text of this episode is taken from Friedrich Engels’ report entitled The Condition of the Working Class in England. The quotation will continue to weave an absurd spiral of meanings that leads to “work,” impotence and unawareness to a causal relationship.

Alice Creischer, Um sie erneut zu erwerben / ...To earn it again (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1996, SD video, 4:3, color, silent, 5:21 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Um sie erneut zu erwerben / ...To earn it again (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1996, SD video, 4:3, color, silent, 5:21 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Um sie erneut zu erwerben / ...To earn it again (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1996, SD video, 4:3, color, silent, 5:21 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Um sie erneut zu erwerben / ...To earn it again (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1996, SD video, 4:3, color, silent, 5:21 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Um sie erneut zu erwerben / ...To earn it again (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1996, SD video, 4:3, color, silent, 5:21 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, color, sound, 2:44 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, color, sound, 2:44 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, color, sound, 2:44 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, color, sound, 2:44 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, color, sound, 2:44 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, color, sound, 2:44 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, color, sound, 2:44 minutes (Still)

The second episode takes place in a new shopping mall in East Berlin. It reproduces a scene from Nietzsche’s The Gay Science – except that now the madman with the lantern is not searching for God but looking for a job. His search is interspersed with reports in sabotage.

Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes

The third episode recreates a scene from Easy Rider.

Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Production shot)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Production shot)
Alice Creischer, Easy Rider (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2000, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:50 minutes (Production shot)

Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes

In the fourth episode, extraterrestrials land in the corridor of an office building, explore the mazelike carpeted structure and discover “human work gelatine” – a term Marx used to designate both wages and goods. But the extraterrestrials’ diagnosis isn’t entirely correct. “This seems to be getting complicated: capital is a semiotic operator.” From the window of the building, the view moves towards the façade of a block of flats from which people are leaping out into mid-air.

Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer in collaboration with Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann & Thomas Winkelkotte, Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 1999, SD video, 4:3, color, sound, 4:18 minutes (Still)
Alice Creischer, Es gibt immer nur mehr / There is always only more (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2002, Digital video, color, sound, 9:30 minutes (Production shot)
Alice Creischer, Es gibt immer nur mehr / There is always only more (Episoden zur arbeitsbefreiten Gesellschaft / Episodes of a society free of work), 2002, Digital video, color, sound, 9:30 minutes (Production shot)

The fifth episode takes us to the Centro in Oberhausen, one of Europe’s largest commercial and leisure complexes. The Centro is often cited as an exemplary instance of the restructuring of heavy industry in the services and tourism sector. Here, the extraterrestrials must get the impression that the work-free society has been consummated. The film deals with this initial bedazzlement and the gradual disillusionment that follows.

Um sie erneut zu erwerben / ...To earn it again 1996

Camera: Martin Ebner
Actors: Martin Ebner, Alice Creischer, Andreas Siekmann, Klaus Weber
Produced for UTV, a self-organised television project

Die Verallgemeinerung von NICHTARBEIT / The generalisation of not working 2000

Camera: Antje Schäfer
‘Making of’ camera: Thomas Rieger
Editing: Viola Rusche
Narrators: Alice Creischer, Christiane Mennikes, Susanne Leeb, Viola Rusche
Assistant: John Dunn

Easy Rider 2000

Camera: Thomas Winkelkotte, Antje Schäfer
Editing: Angelika Levi

Le Truc Couleur / The Colour Thing 1999

Alice Creischer, Mona Hahn, Jane Heiss, Andreas Siekmann, Thomas Winkelkotte
Editing/sound: Karl Hoffmann

Es gibt immer nur mehr / There is always only more 2002

Camera: Antje Schäfer
‘Making of’ camera: Thomas Rieger
Editing: Viola Rusche
Narrators: Alice Creischer, Christiane Mennikes, Susanne Leeb, Viola Rusche
Assistant: John Dunn

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Alice Creischer

Alice Creischer, born in Gerolstein in 1960, studied Philosophy, German literature and Visual Arts in Düsseldorf. As one of the key figures of German political art movements in the Nineties, Creischer contributed to a great amount of collective projects, publications, and exhibitions. Her artistic and theoretic agenda within institutional and economical critique has evolved over 20 years, more recently focusing on the early history of capitalism and globalization. As co-curator of such paradigmatic exhibitions like Messe 2ok (1995), ExArgentina (2004) and The Potosi Principle (2010), Creischer has developed a specific curatorial practice that correlates with her work as an artist and theorist, including her extensive practice in archive research. As author Creischer has contributed to many publications, magazines and fanzines.



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