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Yours, KOW

, Clemens von Wedemeyer

The Fourth Wall

Jan 23 – Apr 22, 2010

DeutschEnglish

After its premiere at the Barbican Art Gallery London (The Curve), KOW is the second venue of Clemens von Wedemeyer’s most recent production, “The Fourth Wall”. Coinciding with the Berlinale and the Transmediale, the project of this Berlin-based artist and filmmaker negotiates the illusionistic nature of the authentic.

Nach der Barbican Art Gallery London (The Curve) zeigen wir als zweite Station die jüngste Ausstellungsproduktion Clemens von Wedemeyers, „The Fourth Wall“. Zeitgleich zu Berlinale und Transmediale diskutiert das Projekt des Berliner Künstlers und Filmemachers die Illusion des Authentischen.

The centre of this extensive exhibition project is a historical incident around a group of contemporary cavemen: the “Tasaday”, a tribe that was discovered in the Philippine rain forest in 1971. Western media declared its discovery a sensation. Apparently, the 26 members of this tribe were still living in a Stone Age, unaware of the modern world. However, already in the eighties, doubt arose as to the authenticity of this discovery which was soon suspected to be a swindle. Unquestionably, the news coverage and the photos of these “peaceful savages” have shaped the Philippines’ image in the international media. This was much to the pleasure of Ferdinand Marcos' government, who discouraged any serious anthropological research within the country, but was always eager to please the media. Was the Tasaday story true? If so, was this tribe the prey of hungry western journalists? Or was this a hoax, staged to divert attention away from the Marco regime? The West’s projection of a jungle paradise?

Historisches Sujet der umfangreichen Schau ist eine Gruppe von Höhlenbewohnern: Die „Tasaday“ wurden 1971 im philippinischen Regenwald von westlichen Medien entdeckt - eine Weltsensation, lebten die 26 Ureinwohner doch wie in der Steinzeit, ohne Wissen von der modernen Welt. Ihre Echtheit wurde allerdings in den 80er Jahren bezweifelt und als Schwindel erklärt. Fest steht, dass die Berichte und Fotografien der friedliebenden Wilden das Bild der Philippinen in der internationalen Presse lange Zeit prägten, sehr zum Gefallen der US-gestützten Diktatur Ferdinand Marcos, die seriöse anthropologische Forschungen erschwerte, die Medien hingegen hofierte. Waren die Tasaday authentisch? Beute aufmerksamer Reporter? Oder eine inszenierte Ablenkung von der Realität in Marcos Regime? Gar nur eine Projektion des Westens auf paradiesisches Leben im Urwald?

Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
DeutschEnglish

An investigation into notions of representation and belief

Eine Untersuchung über Darstellung und Glauben

“The Fourth Wall”, a notion used in theatre and introduced by Diderot (Discours sur la poésie dramatique, 1758), refers to an imaginary divide between stage and audience. This concept enables actors to appear as authentic, as if they were “amongst themselves”. At the same time, the audience is made to believe that the stage act is “real”. In his project for KOW, von Wedemeyer applies the notion of the fourth wall to anthropology as well as to photography and film – disciplines and media that have authorised themselves to adequately and authentically describe humankind and the conditions of life. This power, too, builds on the assumption of a fourth wall: a wall that is set up both by the audience’s desire for an illusion of reality as well as by the willingness of art and social sciences to deliver such an illusion.

In his nine films and interviews, Clemens von Wedemeyer constructs and punctures such fourth walls. These both create and shatter the illusion that we are able to distinguish between images of “others” that are real and images that are merely images. It is an investigation into notions of representation and belief. Yet these works also look into the short time span of a “first contact” – be it the first contact between anthropologists and an isolated group of individuals, between actors and their audience, between the visitors and the works in this exhibition.

Funded by Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg
Text and photos: Alexander Koch

Mit „The Fourth Wall“, der „Vierten Wand“, bezeichnet das Theater seit Diderot (1758) die imaginierte Trennung zwischen Bühnen- und Zuschauerraum, die es Schauspielern erlaubt, authentisch zu scheinen, so als seien sie „unter sich“. Sie verschafft dem Publikum die Illusion, die Bühnenhandlung sei „echt“. Von Wedemeyer überträgt das Konzept auf die Anthropologie und zugleich auf Fotografie und Film. Auch deren Glauben, sich der Authentizität des Menschen und seiner Lebensumstände versichern zu können, verdankt sich einer unsichtbaren Vierten Wand: der vom Publikum gewollten und ihm dargebrachten Illusion, es habe ein Stück Wirklichkeit vor Augen.

In sieben Filmen und Interviews erzeugt und perforiert Clemens von Wedemeyers Ausstellung solche Vierten Wände. Sie schafft und sie zerbricht die Illusion, wir könnten unterscheiden zwischen solchen Bildern vom Anderen, die echt sind und anderen Bildern, die nur Bilder sind. Es ist eine Untersuchung über Darstellung und Glauben und die kurze Zeitspanne des „Erstkontakts“ - zwischen Anthropologen und einer isolierten Gruppe, zwischen Schauspielern und ihrem Publikum, zwischen den Besuchern und den Werken der Ausstellung - während der das Erstaunen über den Anderen noch nach den den Kriterien sucht, ihn zu erfassen.

Gefördert von Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg
Text und Photos: Alexander Koch

Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Found Footage (The Fourth Wall), KOW, 2010, detail
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Found Footage (The Fourth Wall), KOW, 2010, detail
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Found Footage (The Fourth Wall), KOW, 2010, detail
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Found Footage (The Fourth Wall), KOW, 2010, detail
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Found Footage (The Fourth Wall), exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, How to re-establish the Truth About the Tasaday? Interview with John Nance, 2008, HD video
Clemens von Wedemeyer, How to re-establish the Truth About the Tasaday? Interview with John Nance, 2008, HD video
Clemens von Wedemeyer, How to re-establish the Truth About the Tasaday? Interview with John Nance, 2008, HD video
Clemens von Wedemeyer, How to re-establish the Truth About the Tasaday? Interview with John Nance, 2008, HD video
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Wood, 2009, 2 channel installation, HD video, loop, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Found Footage (The Fourth Wall), KOW, 2010, detail
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Fourth Wall, exhibition view, KOW, 2010
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Reception, 2009, 3 channel video installation, 4:3
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Reception, 2009, 3 channel video installation, 4:3
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Reception, 2009, 3 channel video installation, 4:3
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Against Death and interview: How to deal with the uncontacted?, 2009, HD video, 16:9, 9' and 35'
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Against Death and interview: How to deal with the uncontacted?, 2009, HD video, 16:9, 9' and 35'
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Against Death and interview: How to deal with the uncontacted?, 2009, HD video, 16:9, 9' and 35'
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Against Death and interview: How to deal with the uncontacted?, 2009, HD video, 16:9, 9' and 35'
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Against Death and interview: How to deal with the uncontacted?, 2009, HD video, 16:9, 9' and 35'
Clemens von Wedemeyer, Against Death and interview: How to deal with the uncontacted?, 2009, HD video, 16:9, 9' and 35'
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Gentle Ones, 2009, HD Video, 16:9
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Gentle Ones, 2009, HD Video, 16:9
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Gentle Ones, 2009, HD Video, 16:9
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Gentle Ones, 2009, HD Video, 16:9
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Gentle Ones, 2009, HD Video, 16:9
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Gentle Ones, 2009, HD Video, 16:9
Clemens von Wedemeyer, The Gentle Ones, 2009, HD Video, 16:9
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Current

Upcoming

2019

His Master's Voice

, Alice Creischer
Nov 24, 2018 – Jan 19, 2019

Crusoe

, Eugenio Dittborn
Nov 24, 2018 – Jan 19, 2019

KOW MADRID: Contribution to Light. The Early Works of Barbara Hammer

, Barbara Hammer
Sep 13, 2018 – Jan 31, 2019

2018

Was euch am Leben hält, ist, was bei uns zu Asche zerfällt *

, Alice Creischer, Henrike Naumann, Mario Pfeifer, Michael E. Smith, Tobias Zielony
Sep 8 – Nov 10, 2018

EL OTRO, EL MISMO / THE OTHER, THE SAME

, Los Carpinteros
Apr 28 – Jul 21, 2018

Maskirovka

, Tobias Zielony
Mar 24 – Apr 15, 2018

Double Bodies

, Frédéric Moser & Philippe Schwinger
Feb 10 – Mar 17, 2018

Hotel Résistance

, Ahmet Öğüt
Nov 25, 2017 – Jan 28, 2018

2017

Michael E. Smith

, Michael E. Smith
Sep 16 – Nov 5, 2017

Love Story

, Candice Breitz
Apr 29 – Jul 30, 2017

On the Possibility of Light

, Chto Delat
Feb 18 – Apr 9, 2017

On Fear and Education, Disenchantment and Justice, Protest and Disunion in Saxony / Germany

, Mario Pfeifer
Dec 1, 2016 – Apr 15, 2017

The Cabinet of Ramon Haze

, Ramon Haze
Nov 19, 2016 – Jan 29, 2017

Things, Not Words

, Heinrich Dunst
Nov 19, 2016 – Jan 29, 2017

2016

Barbara Hammer & Oswald Oberhuber

, Barbara Hammer, Oswald Oberhuber
Sep 17 – Nov 6, 2016

Out Of The Dark

, Chto Delat, Alice Creischer, Eugenio Dittborn, Heinrich Dunst, Barbara Hammer, Hiwa K, Renzo Martens, Chris Martin, Frédéric Moser & Philippe Schwinger, Mario Pfeifer, Dierk Schmidt, Tina Schulz, Michael E. Smith, Franz Erhard Walther, Clemens von Wedemeyer, Tobias Zielony, Ramon Haze
Jun 26 – Jul 31, 2016

The Citizen

, Tobias Zielony
Apr 30 – Jun 12, 2016

This Lemon Tastes of Apple

, Hiwa K
Apr 30 – Jun 12, 2016

Broken Windows 6.3

, Dierk Schmidt
Mar 12 – Apr 16, 2016

Cast Behind You The Bones Of Your Mother

, Clemens von Wedemeyer
Dec 19, 2015 – Feb 27, 2016

2015

Left To Our Own Devices

Sep 17 – Dec 5, 2015

A Summer Of Films

, Chto Delat, Alice Creischer, Eugenio Dittborn, Heinrich Dunst, Barbara Hammer, Renzo Martens, Frédéric Moser & Philippe Schwinger, Mario Pfeifer, Tina Schulz, Michael E. Smith, Franz Erhard Walther, Clemens von Wedemeyer, Tobias Zielony
Jun 28 – Jul 26, 2015

Approximation In The Digital Age To A Humanity Condemned To Disappear

, Mario Pfeifer
May 2 – Jun 25, 2015

A Lucky Day

, Renzo Martens
May 2 – Jul 26, 2015

Time Capsule

, Chto Delat
Feb 28 – Apr 18, 2015

Have A Crush

, Barbara Hammer
Jan 10 – Feb 14, 2015

Dream Lovers

, Tobias Zielony
Dec 6, 2014 – Feb 14, 2015

2014

Dämmstoffe

, Heinrich Dunst
Nov 1 – Dec 18, 2014

Pinturas Aeropostales

, Eugenio Dittborn
Sep 13 – Nov 23, 2014

Cool Drink on a Hot Day

, Chris Martin
May 3 – Jul 27, 2014

In The Stomach Of The Predators

, Alice Creischer
Mar 1 – Apr 19, 2014

2013

Körperformen

, Franz Erhard Walther
Nov 30 – Feb 13, 2013

40 cbm Of Earth From The Iberian Peninsula

Sep 14 – Oct 30, 2013

, Michael E. Smith

Michael E. Smith II
Apr 27 – Jul 13, 2013

Dignity

, Barbara Hammer
Feb 16 – Apr 14, 2013

Believers

, Alice Creischer, Chto Delat, Michael E. Smith, Franz Erhard Walther, Tobias Zielony
Nov 10, 2012 – Feb 3, 2013

2012

Im Archipel

Sep 8 – Oct 21, 2012

Das Etablissement der Tatsachen The Establishment of Matters of Fact

, Alice Creischer
Apr 27 – Jul 22, 2012

Manitoba

, Tobias Zielony
Feb 3 – Apr 15, 2012

Tina Schulz

, Tina Schulz
Nov 5, 2011 – Jan 28, 2012

2011

A Formal Film In Nine Episodes, Prologue & Epilogue

, Mario Pfeifer
Sep 10 – Oct 28, 2011

Social Violence

Apr 30 – Jul 29, 2011

Barbara Hammer

, Barbara Hammer
Feb 12 – Mar 17, 2011

Franz Erhard Walther

, Franz Erhard Walther
Nov 6, 2010 – Feb 11, 2011

2010

Chris Martin

, Chris Martin
Sep 11 – Oct 24, 2010

Michael E. Smith

, Michael E. Smith
Jun 12 – Jul 25, 2010

Vele, Zgora

, Tobias Zielony
May 1 – Jun 5, 2010

The Fourth Wall

, Clemens von Wedemeyer
Jan 23 – Apr 22, 2010

Antirepresentationalism 3: Issues of Empathy Conceptual and Socially oriented Art in Leipzig 1997–2009

, Mario Pfeifer, Tina Schulz, Clemens von Wedemeyer, Tobias Zielony, Ramon Haze
Nov 28, 2009 – Jan 15, 2010

2009

Antirepresentationalism 2: Trouble with Realism. Conceptual and Socially oriented Art in Leipzig 1997–2009

, Mario Pfeifer, Tina Schulz, Clemens von Wedemeyer, Tobias Zielony, Ramon Haze
Oct 17 – Nov 21, 2009

Antirepresentationalism 1: Politics of Redescription. Conceptual and Socially oriented Art in Leipzig 1997–2009

, Ramon Haze, Mario Pfeifer, Tina Schulz, Clemens von Wedemeyer
Sep 4 – Oct 10, 2009

KOW ISSUE 5: Spirituality and Anti-Universalism

, Chris Martin
May 1 – May 30, 2009

KOW ISSUE 4: THE SOCIAL USE OF SIGNS (OBLIGATION TO EXPRESS)

, Tina Schulz
Apr 3 – Apr 27, 2009

KOW ISSUE 3: Detroits' Post-Fordism

, Michael E. Smith
Mar 27 – Mar 29, 2009

KOW ISSUE 1: Participatory Minimalism

, Franz Erhard Walther
Feb 27 – Mar 21, 2009

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