Jan 23 - march 1 2013
Works in the Exhibition
(Flatscreen In the window)
Hepburn (From the Series "Cadavres Exquis Vivants" by Ulu Braun & Roland Rauschmeier)
02:34 min.,HD 9:16, loop, stereo, 2010
1-channel-video-Installation, loop, 07:20 min., Full HD (1920 x1080), Stereo,
Edition of 7+2AE, © 2009
A 360-degree pan of a fictional space constructed out of found and original footage concerning water and our increasingly tenuous relationship with the earth’s most precious element. Here water is more than just a form of sustenance, it’s also a place that brings out certain behaviors in people: from the desire to explore and experiment to the joy of swimming and dancing. Yet most of all, Bruan’s waterworld is place of business first and foremost, where the nature serves little more than monetary gain. Westcoast is indeed a portrait of global capitalism on an intimate scale.Credits: Sound mix by Johannes Malfatti Thanks to: Niina Lehtonen-Braun, Teuri Haarla, Christian Jakowlef, Teemu Tuonela, Oliver Kochta-Kalleinen, Milan Braun, Stella Braun
(Prints in the Lobby)
Silk Print, 70 x 100cm,
Silk Print, 70 x 100cm,
Silk Print, 70 x 100cm,
Edition: 12+3AE Kampusch-Gandalf, 2013Silk Print, 70 x 100cm,
(Main Room Projection)
05:45 min., HD, 2-channel-version, 2013 (05:30 min., HD, 1-channel-version, 2011)
1-channel-video-Installation (loop): 5:30 min., Full HD (1920 x1080), Sound: Stereo,
Edition of 7+2AE, ©2010/11
A 360-degree pan of a gigantic city-park located in the heart of a dense fictional city. For Braun, public parks are the last “free-spot” offered to human subjects, and yet they’re also becoming increasingly controlled and confined by public officials. In “Park” Braun uses nearly 1000 found moving elements that he “hijacked” as he says from German television and movies. They include various “diversions as sporting events and musical acts, but also religious and romantic exploits. In the end the park itself is reduced to a more rural space where men and woman become more scavenger-like, quite literally feeding off the land. Credits: Cast: Shalom Abraham, Ulduc, Katja Höppner, Niina Lehtonen Braun, Anne Juren Sound: Martin Maleßa, Ulu Braun Thanks to: Minna Tarkka, Susa Pop, Sergio Bermudez, Heidi Tikka, Roland Rauschmeier, Suni Hoffmann Supported by Media Facades Festival
Print, 50 x 60cm,
(Mid Area Projection, right)
6:27 min., HD, 20101-channel video-Installation (loop), 06:27 min., Full HD (1920 x1080), Sound: Stereo
Edition of 7+2AE, ©2010
A 360-degree pan of an outdoor party located at a fictional private residence. In this piece Braun explores the nature of private gatherings and in particular, how they can bring together a wide array of belief systems. In this piece Braun uses hundreds of found and original footage to create a space where all forms of religion is practiced and adversaries can exist in (a temporary) harmony. Credits: Cast: Tellervo Kalleinen, Teemu Tuonela, Sergio Bermudez, StellaSound: Johannes Malfatti, Martin Maleßa, Ulu BraunThanks to: YKON, Kunstverein Springhornhof, Oliver Kochta-Kalleinen, NLB
Print, 50 x 60cm,
(Mid Area Projection, Left)
DIE FLUTUNG VON VIKTORIA (The Flooding of the Victoria Plains)
22:09 min., DV, 200422 min., DV PAL (720x576)/ DVD & BetaSP, Dolby Stereo, Subtitles: English, French, Russian
Edition of 8, © 2002-2005
A “live action puppet animation” as Braun calls it, “Die Flutung” is composed entirely of small puppets and sets made by the artist. Yet the entire film, which was carefully scripted, was shot in real time and made to look like a stop-motion film. It follows the final days before a major flood is scheduled to appear and wipe out a populated area. To capitalize on the event, a tour bus takes visitors to high land to view the area one last time before the water arrives. Yet one passenger takes matters in his own hands when officials announce that the waters are arriving sooner than expected and forces a tragedy to occur. Nevertheless, it's a tragedy of a transcendent nature. Credits: A video by Ulu Braun written by: Ulu Braun, Jacques Palminger, Alexej Tchernyi Setting and camera: Ulu Braun, Alexej Tchernyi Voices: Jacques Palminger, Alan Seymoure, Marianne Mielke, Alexej Tchernyi, Niina Braun, Volker von Prittwitz, Aditional settings: Mike Jordan, Jin Hee Cho Music composed by: Max Knoth Music played by: Filmorchester Babelsberg under Bernd Wefelmeyer Sound: Hanna Weissgerber Sound-Mix: Hanna Weissgerber & Daniel Griese Thanks to: Alexej Tchernyi, Agnes Domke, Heidrun Schiller, Christina Schindler, Frank Gessner, Roland Seidel, Niina Braun, Oliver Kochta, a production by Ulu Braun & HFF-Potsdam
ASSISI (From the Series "Cadavres Exquis Vivants" by Ulu Braun & Roland Rauschmeier)
02:44 min.,HD 9:16, loop, stereo, 2010
DAPHNE (From the Series "Cadavres Exquis Vivants" by Ulu Braun & Roland Rauschmeier)
02:32 min.,HD 9:16, loop, stereo, 2009
(Small Back Room)
11:30 min., DV, dolby suround 5.1, loop, 2013
Using virtually hundreds of film and TV clips—each one showing a singular tilt upwards—Braun has created what might be the longest crane shot in cinematic history. It begins deep underwater and continues upwards through a seemingly endless array of “mini dramas” until it finally reaches its apex in outer space. Meanwhile, the space itself mimics the feeling and sensation of an elevator as it moves the viewer up through the heavens.
TOWER OF INVINCIBILITY
15:11 min., HD, 16:9, Stereo, 2012
Teufelsberg (Devil’s Mountain) in Berlin was the home to a listening station for the US Army during the Cold War (1957-1991). In 2008 the Maharishi Foundation, along with Director David Lynch, bought the terrain for building a 50 meter tall “Tower of Invincibility” and a “Vedic University of Peace” for 1000 students. After public scandals the building permits were denied and Lynch and the Maharishi Foundation were not allowed to pursue their commercial efforts. Braun’s film, Tower of Inevitability, was shot on location at Teufelsberg and follows a group of pilgrims as they seek health, knowledge and skills at a very special retreat. The film’s language uses a 1920s silent film aesthetic to convey an idea of naiveté and ‘magic’, while suggesting that the ultimate arbiter of who and what gets accepted as a “true” faith-based organization can only be determined by the state.Credits: with: Pasi Mäkelä, Jussi Saivo, Katja Höppner, Niina Lehtonen-Braun, Shalmon Abraham, Mimosa Pale, Ida Palojärvi, Jefferson Preto, Ina Gercke, Geoffrey GarrisonMusic by Jussi Saivo, Mika Rättö, Juha Hietaniemi Sound mix: Johannes Malfatti written & directed by Ulu Braun Camera: Ulu Braun, Shalmon Abraham co written by Niina Lehtonen Braun, Sabotanic Garden Produced by Ulu Braun & Niina Lehtonen Braun Co-produced by Circus Maximus Supported by AVEK .
Young Projects is pleased to present the first major survey of works by Ulu Braun in the United States. Braun is known worldwide for his painterly approach to video and film-based artworks and has shown at numerous film festivals and museums alike. The show features a wide range of his works including three large-scale wallworks; thee flatscreen pieces, a short film that toys with director David Lynch’s connection to the Maharishi Foundation, a live-action puppet narrative and several photographic prints.
Born in Schongau, Germany (1976) and based in Berlin, first studied Painting and Experimental film in Vienna and then Animation film at Babelsberg Film University in Potsdam, Germany. He then joined an influential street art collective in Berlin and spent much of his postgraduate years working in a wide array of mediums, including graffiti.
Today the artist feels that he is still working with his favorite mediums—painting, cinema and graffiti—albeit through the form of video. By using video, he suggests, he can not only explore some of the same formalist ideas he enjoyed in those traditional forms—but take them further.
Nowhere is that better seen than in Braun’s presentation of “The Park,” a monumental collage that is being shown for the first time as a dual channel, wall-sized projection. Here one can sense Braun’s interest in graffiti and street art in the way the work inhabits and occupies an entire 30’ wall inside the gallery. Like each of his collage works, “The Park” was carefully composed on paper before execution, and constructed out of nearly 1000 individual moving elements culled from TV and film (as well as original footage shot by Braun himself). More importantly, like “Atlantic Garden” and “Westcoast,” which are also included in the show, the film takes the form of a 360-degree spin or moving panorama that situates the viewer quite literally at ‘the center of the world.’ For Braun, such forced subjectivity is essential to the reading of the work. Indeed, panoramic painting, photography, and dioramas are central to these works. Panoramic dioramas in particular, which were exceptionally popular in the 19th century and routinely mounted in world’s fairs and major cities around the world, are said to be the place where the modern spectator was truly born. Many used the 360-degree panorama to recreate notorious events (most notably disasters) such the Battle of Waterloo, the Great Earthquake of Lisbon and the burning of Sebastapol. Spectators were therefore encouraged to “indulge” in the details of such disasters “with their own eyes, as if there were there themselves”. Not surprisingly, it wasn’t long before such panoramas began to include moving images, first, by means of sophisticated magic-lanterns which could flip from one image to another ("dissolving-views"), and then by various "motion picture" processes. Thus the panorama may have led to modern cinema in a way that the magic lantern or the zootrope could not have.
Braun’s collage work uses the panorama to explore similar notions of the spectacle. And it does so by using viewer’s gaze (as opposed to montage and editing) to tell stories. Each of his works is carefully composed to hint at or express a particular theme. “The Park” for instance, deals with the notion of public parks as the last ‘free-spot’ within culture, and all forms of ‘expression’ are tolerated. Similarly, “Atlantic Garden” explores the nature of private gatherings and in particular, how they offer a space where people from different belief systems, religions and faiths can co-exist.
Belief systems are in fact, a common strain within Braun’s work. Aside from “Atlantic Garden,” films such as “Tower of Invincibility”, “The Flooding of the Victorian Plains”, and various prints and flatscreen works deal with notions of spirituality. “Tower” for instance, follows a group of adherents who travel to a famous “Tower” to better their health and gain skills and special powers. But the film was inspired by the failed attempt by the Maharishi Foundation and director David Lynch to build a ‘Tower of invincibility’ on a plot of German land. Ironically, the land was known as “Devil’s Mountain,” which had already been used as a “listening station” for nearly 40 years by the US government. Thus one absurd idea is usurped by another and another still, while the film’s protagonists carry on unwittingly and end up believing their own truth.
In the end, it would be easy to argue at Braun’s approach embraces the cynical and sincere quite equally. Yet upon closer examination, it’s obvious that he’s deeply interested in the need for more tolerance in the world, and as many of the works such as “Westcoast” and “Flooding” suggest, he’s also concerned with the politics of ecology and the environment.
About the artist:
Braun studied painting and experimental film in Vienna (AT) and Helsinki (FI) and Potsdam (D). He is the only artist whose video work has featured in three consecutive editions of this prestigious Videonale at the Kunstmuseum Bonn and his films have been presented at both, international film festivals (Berlin, Paris, Madrid, Oberhausen, Oberhausen, Tampere, Graz, Seoul and Kyoto among others) and museums alike. Some of the institutions who have hosted his work include the Museum der Moderne, Salzburg; Kunsthalle Wien, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow; KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin; Shedhalle Zürich; Zacheta, National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, Poland; and Taidehalli, Helsinki, Finland.