Videos by Yuri Ancarani, Gaëlle Boucand, Chen Chieh-jen, Willie Doherty, Harun Farocki / Antje Ehmann, Pieter Hugo, Ali Kazma, Eva Leitolf, Armin Linke, Gabriela Löffel, Ad Nuis, Julika Rudelius and Thomas Vroege
For the first time since its opening the MAST Foundation presents an exhibition entirely dedicated to the moving image. If the story of industry and labour filtered until now through the photographic medium, in this show videos will provide a visual representation. Through the filmed interpretation of reality, the eye of the video camera gives evidence of the mutability of a world – the world of work and production – that is undergoing rapid transformation, describing changes, evolutions and breaking points in a direct and engaging manner.
The videos in the exhibition deal with the changes in the industrial world, wandering restlessly through and around increasingly empty factory plants, while elsewhere the hammering and hissing continues or production carries on silently, at great speed and with high precision. They also guide us through digitally controlled environments devoid of people, and in desert, abandoned factories that have fallen out of use. These works develop powerful images of different atmospheres in which work or negotiations take place, from the manual activities of an individual person to mass production, from human to robotic, from energy to high-tech production, from product development to contractual negotiations, from legal issues to structural, existential problems in the financial system and its forms of coexistence and cooperation.
We live in times of shifting reality – we perceive it as a series of parallel planes that function alongside each other, consecutively, and overlapping with each other. The exhibition provides a visual representation of this by grouping the various videos in small communities in which each video is shown and simultaneously comments on, contrasts with or simply silently joins or stands apart from the other videos. This show requires a little more time than usual to get to grips with it, to absorb it. Take some time to behold these works: the touching power, the strength, the energy of these moving images convey in a variety of narratives and visual languages the transformation of labour and of our lives.