Harun Farocki: Videogramme einer Revolution

20 September–5 November 2006

Index presents the first Swedish solo exhibition featuring the German film-maker Harun Farocki, whose work has been an important reference for other film-makers and artists as well as for media theorists since the 1960s. His analytical use of film is unique, both with regard to the quantity of films he has made, almost one hundred, and the influence he has had on the contemporary discussion of image as language and tool for political structures.

The main focus of the exhibition will be Videogramme einer Revolution from 1992. The film deals with the role of the media during the revolution of December 1989, which, after a number of days, ended with the fall and death of the Romanian dictator Ceausescu. For his film, Farocki has chosen to work only with archive footage of the events; clearly indicating how video/ TV images not only describes history but actually create it. A central place in the Romanian revolution that was of fundamental importance to the course of events was the TV- station in Bucharest. Occupied by demonstrators the station broadcast non-stop throughout the events and became a stage where part of the drama took place in front of the cameras and the viewers. The demonstrators’ seriousness and inexperienced handling of the medium contrasts starkly with and reveals the structures of the TV- medium in itself. Videogramme einer Revolution was made in collaboration with the Romanian media and literature theorist Andrei Ujica.

The exhibition also offers a Harun Farocki DVD library comprising twelve of his films. The collection includes Nicht löschbares Feuer (1969) which deals with the use of napalm and the American chemical industry’s role in the Vietnam war and single-channel versions of his later works Auge/Maschine I-III and Gegen-Musik, which investigates various contemporary visualization techniques used, for example, for surveillance and in industrial production.

In connection with the opening on 20 September, Harun Farocki will visit Index and discuss his work with film theorist Trond Lundemo, Stockholm University and curator Helena Holmberg, Index. 5 pm. The exhibition is part of Xposeptember 2006. Trond Lundemo presents Harun Farocki in the festival magazine.

Thanks to Northern Star, the Goethe Institute in Stockholm and Stockholms Läns Bildningsförbund.