Tag Archives: media installation

Those Were The Days: an AR-enhanced media installation

You see a display cabinet containing stranded goods, sand and eelgrass, the remains of a photograph, and a triptych painting on antique panels. Somebody has told you that the panels might be coated with short films, visible only through the lens of a smartphone. You hold your smartphone over the scenery, and things begin to move, and you can hear voices. Soon you’ll be lost in thought.

“Those Were The Days” is a brand new, augmented reality enhanced media installation. Exhibition views from Mdina Biennale 2020 on Malta.

New batch of “17 Seconds Art” arrived!

For my solo show at Vykhod, the center for media art in Petrozavodsk, Karelia, I produced a new batch of “17 Sekunden Kunst” video pizzazz. These boxes were served fresh to attenders of the private view, who had the choice between “Making friends”, “Once around the block”, “Bowing takes practice”, “Artist in residence” (my trilogy on crazy artists in weird residencies), and more.

I’m adding here the curator’s statement on this series [original title: “17 Sekunden Kunst”], written by Paolo Bianchi on the occasion of the premiere of these films at Linz09:

When dizzying changes regularly put the vulnerability of people and citizens to the test, Lena Lapschina’s work is precisely in this gap between surprise and imposition. For years she has been taking video material at international venues of art.

Lena Lapschina creates short videos from her material, which she gives an aesthetic form under the title “17 Seconds Art”. By this exact limitation in time, the films produce the effect of decoupling from reality. Through the radical sequencing, the recordings on the other side achieve a compaction, which becomes a curious and impressive image microcosmos of the social environment. The shots seem like a witty puzzle game that oscillates in content and thematically from absurd to banal. This humor does not present itself supercilious and does not have better knowledge. It appears in the gap between the sensible and the senseless.

Lena Lapschina has chosen the short time span of 17 seconds, as it is worth it to stay tuned.

Live smart, cook healthily: The “Smacoo!!” installation

I’ve built a fully fledged tranquil fantasyland of endless gadgetry and enjoyment into the catacombs of a defunct flagship building of the municipal housing company of the city of Vienna, Austria. A commission by the Soho-in-Ottakring foundation for the 2016 edition of their biennial art festival, the piece comprises a three-channel video installation with sound, myriads of smartlife equipment, organic food, all sorts of drinkable liquids, and a considerable amount of interior design craftwomanship.

People entering the “Smacoo!!” installation – the title is a blend of the words smart and cooking – barely found out if they had immersed into a video program, or into the land of free milk and honey, or into a smart laboratory of the future, or into a modern version of Pieter Breughel’s “Luilekkerland”.

All things were interwoven with each other, and while some visitors just fell into trance by watching a looped version of my film “Another ordinary pre-view day at Esposizione Internazionale d’Arte”, others settled on the large sofa where they could screen the one-hour runtime video “The influence of alcoholic drinks on the social intercourse of the intelligentsija”, while their children quickly found out about the super organic meals and dairy everywhere in the room (and also about the trampoline-like qualities of the sofa suite).

Another group of participants seemed to be waiting in front of an apparent oven for the lasagne to be ready and served, although that moment never happened – “Lasagne TV”, an extra-short loop of seventeen seconds on the tiny kitchen-class flat screen.

A series of private-style events poored beautiful people into the installation, and besides all the food processing and cooking, the cool drinks and the hot discussions, there was also time for intense quantify-yourself-activities and video-surveillance aka film-shooting. Results? Soon!

“17 Sekunden Kunst” to be screened in NYC

For those who happen to be in New York on March 5: My “17 Sekunden Kunst” (“17 Seconds Of Art”) series is part of The Art Film Festival at the Hunter College!

Swiss curator, critic and art historian Paolo Bianchi, who commissioned the series a while ago for Upper Austria’s OK Centrum, wrote about the piece in the catalogue: “For years, Lena Lapschina has been filming everyday situations while traveling, which oscillate from the absurd to the banal. She uses this to make short videos that present in only 17 seconds art. The films all are dealing with art, but most of all with the perception of art. In the video ‘Once around the block’ a man leaves a party in Vienna City to get some fresh air, takes off his clothes, runs once around the block and puts his clothes calmly back on. A quicker answer to the question ‘What is art?’ is hardly imaginable.”

“17 Sekunden Kunst” for some years had tagged itself an “ongoing series” and comprises two dozens or so stand-alone films and mini-series. At Park Avenue, I’m going to show five pieces: 1. “Artist in residence”: Lena Lapschina’s artist trilogy. 2. “Once around the block” (original title: “Einmal um den Häuserblock”): Vienna, the city of actionism, revisited. 3. “Making friends”: About creation and subjective awareness of a friend. 4. “Bowing takes practice” (original title: “Verbeugungsübung”): Facing the authorities should be well practised. 5. “Eugen’s Appartment”: A mini-soap in 7 episodes.

The Art Film Festival: Saturday, March 5, 2016, 1:00-8:00 PM, Ida K. Lang Recital Hall at Hunter College, 695 Park Ave, New York, NY 10065. “17 Sekunden Kunst” is scheduled at 5:30, followed by a brief Q&A session.

“17 Sekunden Kunst” by Lena Lapschina is available as a limited pizza box edition.

Of battery-powered chainsaws, Franz Kafka, curating, and the Art-Free Territory

I’ve sent an image scientist through my latest exhib in Austria, “Home Alone”. Here is what she brought back from the tour:

“Home Alone” is a fifty meter wide media installation, staged at the “Ausstellungsbrücke” (english: “Exhibition Bridge”) in Sankt Pölten, Lower Austria. It involves a “fitness zone”, a “living room”, a “museum”, and a “bar”. Each of these areas provide different levels of involvement to the visitors.

The show starts with a huge wall painting, depicting the exhibition’s intro text and a dozen company logos. Next to it resides the participatory video work “Get Fit With Dr. Lapschina”, which asks the visitors to work out. Stuff for engaging in the vigorous physical exercises is provided – as well as a bunch of museum benches, for people who prefer the lean-back mode.

The living room part of “Home Alone” has a comfy sofa suite, a large screen, several framed pictures on the walls, three lightboxes, a couple of books and catalogues on a coffee table, a hammock, and a bottle of wine to offer. The pictures don’t show anything though. They are only reminders. Also these aren’t regular lightboxes. Their role is to provide a distinct atmosphere to the place. And while the TV presents a 3′ loop version of Lena Lapschina’s video piece “Runtime”, it’s just the camo jacket for the smart home components everywhere in the room.

So, why not spend some time in the museum? Meticulously arranged vitrines give an impression of life in Lower Austria, in Manhattan or in Brooklyn, or elsewhere on this planet. It’s about dreams and nightmares, art and artists, battery-powered chainsaws and Franz Kafka, curating and the “Art-Free Territory”. It’s not immediately clear if the assemblage should be entertaining or disturbing. Like all museum stuff, in the first place it is educating, and that is what visitors find out during extended conversations in the bar and kitchen areas built into the flow of the “Home Alone” installation.

Runtime

“Runtime” is a two-channel video installation with sound. It oscillates between the topics of time and tension, energy and inner strength. The two projections, which are placed at right angles, seem to be influenced by context. Watched in the daytime or in the nighttime, tonalities vary. I’ve been installing “Runtime” for the first time in the course of a private view in Kunsthalle Kleinbasel (Switzerland). There’s also a limited photo series of “Runtime” available.

“Waymarks & Dialogues” at Mardin Bienali

“İşaretler ve Diyaloglar” (“Waymarks & Dialogues”) is a situation-specific work for the 3rd Biennial in Mardin. Here, on the verge of Turkey, in the northernmost part of Mesopotamia, I’ve met with people and listened to conversations in order to record the most contemporary words in the various languages of Mardin. These words I’ve mounted in the medieval part of the city, in the narrow 1. Cadde (1st Lane), starting at the massive walls of Mor Efrem Manastırı. Intertwined with a series of lightboxes, which hide in the tiny workshops along 1. Cadde, a mythological footpath is formed. Visitors can discover both their history – and their destination.