Amie Siegel

Texts

See also

Chronology, Biography, Current, Books, Contact

Jennifer Allen
Artforum.com, Critics' Picks, February 2006



"Forum Expanded"
Kunst-Werke, Berlin
February 09 - February 26, 2006

What is the relation between film and site? On the occasion of the fifty-sixth Berlinale, Kunste-Werke curator Anselm Franke brings together four filmic installations to explore this question. Amos Gitai's News From House / News From Home, 2006, is the central work: Twenty monitors show loops of different scenes from the House trilogy, which the Israeli filmmaker began in 1982 and just completed. The self-reflexive footage, which progresses from black-and-white to color, follows the fate of one West Jerusalem house whose changing owners and appearance manifest the larger Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Matthew Buckingham's Muhheakantuck- Everything Has a Name, 2005 offers an aerial view of Muhheakantuck, now known as the Hudson River Valley. As the camera surveys the developed coast with the eye of a cartographer, a voice-over relates how the area was colonized, its original inhabitants abolished and forgotten. Amie Siegel delved into the archives of DEFA, the studio of the late German Democratic Republic, and chose sequences from various films shot on location in the former East Berlin. For her remarkable Berlin Remake, 2005, Siegel painstakingly reshot the scenes; the original and her remake are projected beside each other. While highlighting Berlin's rapid transformation, Siegel steps into the shoes of East German filmmakers who captured the city before reunification- a ritualized repetitive gesture that underscores the presence of the body behind the camera. Harun Farocki's On Construction of Griffith's Films, 2006, is more filmic essay than film: Using two monitors and adding his own explanatory subtitles, Farocki demonstrates how the great silent filmmaker developed techniques that allowed the camera to establish its own sense of space beyond the architecture of the film set. Whether exploring the set or the location, these works successfully link moving pictures to specific places.