15 January – 3 February Kunsthal Charlottenborg is proud to present the Sirah Foighel Brutmann & Eitan Efrat Film Programme ‘Orientation’ curated by Tinne Zenner.
Three films by Sirah Foighel Brutmann & Eitan Efrat are shown throughout the opening hours in Kunsthal Charlottenborg Art Cinema: ‘Complex’ (2009), ‘Printed Matter’ (2011) and ‘Orientation’ (2015).
The film programme Orientation consists of a selection of works from ten years of collaboration between the two artists. The films are concerned with historic narratives and relations between the private and political in the context of contemporary geopolitics. While questioning the spatial and temporal potential within the moving image medium, the films utilise performative examinations – with the camera, body, voice or image itself as the actor.
Sirah and Eitan (both °1983 in Tel Aviv) have been working in collaboration for several years and are creating works in the Audiovisual field. Living and working in Brussels. Sirah and Eitan’s practice focuses on the performative aspects of the moving image. In their work they aim to mark the spatial and durational potentialities in the reading of images – moving or still; the relations between spectatorship and history; the temporality of narratives and memory and the material surfaces of image production. Their works have been shown in duo exhibitions in Kunsthalle Basel (CH), Argos (BE) and CAC Delme (FR); at group exhibitions in Argos, Brussels (BE); Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, Humburg (DE); Portikus, Frankfurt (DE); Museumcultuur Strombeek (BE); Skulpturenmuseum Glaskasten Marl (DE) Jeu de Paume, Paris (FR) and STUK, Leuven (BE. In film festivals such as EMAF, Osnabrück DE; Atonal, Berlin DE; Doc Lisboa PL; Underdox Munich DE; Oberhausen Film Festival, DE; Les Rencontres International, Paris and Berlin; IDFA, Amsterdam NL; New Horizons, Wroclaw PL; Oberhausen Film Festival, DE; Kasseler Dokfest, Kassel, DE; Rotterdam Film Festival, NL; Media City, Windsor, CA; Images, Toronto CA; Planstik, Dublin IE; November Film Festival, London UK; Visite, Antwerp BE; Bratislava Film Festival SK; 25FPS Zagreb HR.
Films in the programme:
DV-PAL, 4:3, 9”
On a winter night, at an open parking lot in Tel Aviv, seven men who served together in the Israeli army meet again. The reunion of the group brings back the atmosphere they know so well from three years of army service in the special forces. On the parking lot surface an outline of a fictional house is sketched and the ex-soldiers will reenact the military manoeuvre of taking over a civilian house. Their weapons are replaced by a paper roll and the zone of combat by an open space in Tel Aviv. During their military service the soldiers were trained to perform this manoeuvre automatically. In the new context the action of the “take-over” is stripped down from its original context and becoming a performance.
‘Printed Matter’ (2011)
16mm on HD video, color, 4:3, stereo sound, BE, 29”
Printed Matter follows twenty years of photographic news coverage in Israel/Palestine (1982-2002), through the archive of photojournalist André Brutmann. The photographer, Foighel Brutmann’s father, captured with his camera, both daily and major news events and his own family life; from the birth of his daughter and son, through the first and second Palestinian uprisings, the assassination of the Israeli Prime Minister Yizhak Rabin, and more. In Printed Matter his images are shown in a selection of about 80 contactsheets, together with the voice of his partner and colleague Hanne Foighel, who is going through the archive, reminiscing and remembering the events from her point of view – as a mother and as a journalist herself. The film, which is divided by three 16mm-reel-long chapters, tries to review two decades through multiple parallel “points of view”, portrayed simultaneously. The work questions the division between different labels such as “political” and “personal” and how images are read in favor of narratives, and visa versa.
HD video, color, 16:9, stereo sound, BE, 12”
Looking at two locations— the public sculpture White Square commemorating the founders of Tel Aviv, and the shrine of Palestinian village Salame in today’s Israeli Kafar Shalem—Orientation focuses on the ability of architectural material, and of sound and image, to register collective forgetfulness.
In 1989, the Israeli sculptor Dani Karavan, completed his sculpture White Square. The work was commissioned by the Municipality of Tel Aviv, and by the end of the building process Karavan decided to dedicate the sculpture to the founders of Tel Aviv—among whom his father Abraham Karavan, who was the city’s landscape architect for four decades from 1930’s onwards. The sculpture is composed of simple geometrical shapes and is made of white concrete, influenced by the International Style of early architecture in Tel Aviv. White Square—situated on the highest point in the area located in the eastern outskirts of Tel Aviv—overlooks through the skyscrapers all the way to the Mediterranean Sea in the west. The commonly used name of the hill on which White Square is exalted is pronounced in Arabic: “Giv’at Batih” (Watermelon Hill).
The remains of the shrine of Salame, in today’s Tel Avivian neighbourhood Kfar Shalem is located a few hundred meters south of this hill. The abandoned dome-structure was once at the centre of the ancient Palestinian village Salame. The village, dating back to the 16th century up until 1948, was located on the highway from Jaffa Port to the mainland. During the ‘Nakba’ of 1948 it was occupied and depopulated by the Israeli Army and the new Zionist state. Weeks after expelling the Palestinian villagers from their land, the Israeli authorities—managing waves of Jewish immigration—re-inhabited the village with Yemenite Jews. Those, were settled in the original Palestinian stone houses. Today, decades later, the ownership of the land is still in dispute, and the Jewish-Israeli residents of Kfar Shalem are threatened with evacuation due to a construction-corporations’ plan to destroy the stone houses and to build a new profitable neighbourhood. Orientation is the second chapter in a series of works titled Gathering Series.