Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society Archives
Budapest: Screening and Talk by Dani Gal
29 October, 6.00 to 8.00 pm
Venue: Vera and Donald Blinken Open Society archives | Arany János u, 32, Budapest 1051, Hungary
Hosted by: Katalin Székely, Creative Programme Office, Central European University – Open Society Archives
Part of 2019 artist-in-residence, Blood Mountain Projects
Discussion chaired by Prof. Hedvig Turai, art historian and critic
Fields of Neutrality (32 mins, HD), 2019
Commissioned by Staatsgalerie Stuttgart on the occasion of the Bauhaus centennial, this staged television-style interview with Ludwig Mies Van Der Rohe depicts the architect late in his life, confronted with his time as the final Bauhaus director, and his refusal to take a political stance amid pressure from the newly established Nazi government and communist students. The interviewer confronts Mies about his unwillingness to take a political position amid pressure both from communist students and the newly established Nazi government. Focusing on the events that led to the closure of the Bauhaus by the Gestapo in 1933, including Mies’s meeting with Alfred Rosenberg, his meeting with a young Gestapo officer in an attempt to keep the Bauhaus open under the Nazi regime, and his interest to continue his practice in Germany, the film questions cultural notions of modern architecture as an aesthetic reflection of progressive humanistic values. By examining the nature of the relationship between Mies and the Nazis, insight is gained not only into the climate of the last days of the Bauhaus and its clash with fascist forces but also into historic and contemporary principles of morality.
Camera: Itay Marom
Production: Dani Gal and Caroline Kirberg
Commissioner: Staatsgalerie Stuttgart
Dani Gal (born 1975, Jerusalem) lives and works in Berlin. He studied at the Bezalel Academy for Art and Design in Jerusalem, the Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste Städelschule in Frankfurt and the Cooper Union in New York. His films and works have been shown at the Centre Pompidou in Paris (2018), Documenta 14 (2017), Kunsthalle Wien (2015), Kunsthaus in Zurich (2015), Berlinale Forum Expanded (2014), Jewish Museum in New York (2014), Kunsthalle in St. Gallen Swizerland (2013), New Museum in New York (2012), 54th Venice Biennale (2011), and the Istanbul Biennale (2011).
Dani Gal’s artistic practice focuses on the production of ideology through the representation of specific historical narratives in a variety of media in order to question the claims of historical knowledge and to reveal and challenge underlying political preconceptions. Using archival documents toward the creation of cinematic reenactments, sound compositions, and other interdisciplinary work, Gal explores the relationship between image, sound and text (written and spoken) to illuminate national interests behind the construction of historical narratives and the process of shaping collective/national memory. His work searches and examines specific historical cases to expose how political powers control certain narratives and repress others as a way to maintain power.