Fellowship at OSA ARCHIVUM in Budapest for my audio-visual project

I was awarded a 1 month scholarship from Visegrad Fund at OSA ARCHIVUM in Budapest to conduct my audio-visual project and research about communist architecture! This is a continuing project which I started 3 years ago in december 2013 in Bucharest thanks to Nisi Masa’s experimental film workshop and Sorina Cinemapus Diaconu and continued in Berlin thanks to Eva Gy and Quickino.

This time you’ll find me running around the city with my camera and surrounded by books and old communist footage in the archives and editing my video-art pieces this summer in Budapest.

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“RELICS OF COMMUNIST ARCHITECTURE” AUDIOVISUAL PROJECT

Research description:

Three years ago I initiated a project based on my experience in Romania which involves the concept of the gigantic residential palace of Ceausescu and the historical circumstances that lead to its completion – I made a short video showing the past documents connected with its construction, the historical events that took place in the palace in 1989 and the present state of the monster combining the nowadays footage with 8mm archive footage from 1963.

Two years ago I made a similar video concerning the construction and fall of the Berlin Wall and recent reconstruction of former communist settlements in east Berlin entitled (L)Ost Berlin. Recently I am working on a similar video on the communist architecture in Prague. I intend to create video art documentaries concerning other cities in the Eastern Block as well. Starting with Budapest during my fellowship at OSA ARCHIVUM and collecting archival footage for other cities, namely Bratislava, Warsaw, Dresden… I’ll be producing a complete cycle of video-art films to be shown in a galleries with a proper explanation in a written text which will accompany the video-art installation.

During my research at OSA, I intend to use the audiovisual material capturing architecture (or communist statues or public spaces) and important moments from the communist history related to those places. I want to spent at least four weeks in the OSA archive watching accessible audiovisaul metariasl and researching related archives. And three other weeks filming the material in Budpest which has relation to the Kádár past. I also want to go and shoot in the nearby Bratislava. I also intend to search for other archival video and audio material from Warsaw, Bucharest (could be added to my existing video material – see bellow).

My complete project will cover all countries and their capitals from the former Soviet Eastern Block. Yet during the 1 month fellowship at OSA, I will focus mainly on Budapest. I want to shoot recent state of the communist buildings while doing the fellowship and search for archival footage of the buildings and public spaces.

The result of my research and shooting will be made into art video project entitled RELICS OF COMMUNIST ARCHITECTURE – consisting of 6 short 4-5min long movies of the footage of 30 minutes together. They can be screened as one piece at documentary film festivals and shown in galleries as video-art installation as separate video-art pieces (each city/1 video). The installation in the gallery would require either 1 screen and play all video pieces in a loop or several screens and loudspeakers – each of the screen could have a written description of the displayed architecture and description of the historical events beside to the screen. The videos could be displayed in the galleries in all countries of the research.

Artistic approach:

I want to use technique of split screens – at one or 2 of the split screens showing the recent footage of the architecture and at the other split screens showing the important historical events concerning the space or the buildings it selfs, finding the same angles while filming them and comparing the archival materials.

For the sound, I want to use authentic audio recordings of communist songs related to the topic of architecture or important events happening at the buildings which I will find at the archives. I will collaborate with a film-music composer Dave Abbott from GB/GE who will use the sounds to compose audio-tracks which will be used as a base for each videoart clip.

Examples of the project:

PART 1: “TREI MINUTI DE BUCHAREST” (2013)

Screenshots from the videoart :

Snímek obrazovky 2015-04-20 v 8.48.51 PMPalace of the Parliament in Bucharest (1984), the largest civilian building in the world and the second largest building after Pentagon. Recent footage and archival footage: young architect of the Palace, Anca Petrescu introducing the palace and model of the palace on black and white picture.

Snímek obrazovky 2015-04-20 v 8.51.51 PMThe former headquarters of the Central Committee of the Romanian Communist Party (now the Ministry of Internal Affairs building) in Bucharest’s Palace Square where Ceausescu gave his final speech on 21 December 1989. The broadcasting of his speech was interrupted.

PART 2: BERLIN – “(L)OST BERLIN” (2013)

The recent footage for the project I shot in Berlin in 2013 (including Berliner Zeitung building, Soviet War memorial park, Berlin Wall, settlements etc. ) – but I need to get an approval from Bundes Archive in Berlin or alternatively look for a footage in OSA archive to complete the video.

Screen shot LOST BERLIN

Screen shot LOST BERLIN 2

Music which will be used for the Berlin part is composed by German music composer Bastian Schick: :https://soundcloud.com/bastianschick/zuckerb-ckertanz?in=haruna-honcoop/sets/my-film-music. The music composition is combining famous speech by Kennedy: “Ich bin Ein Berliner” and Honecker’s speech at the Berlin Wall.

So I’m very thankful to VISEGRAD FUND that I can continue my project which started in a spontaneous way and that I will have finally a proper basis and financial support to continue.

Trainspot story. Trip to the unknown… Reset. Restart. Recover.

This has been a long trip. I met Jested for the first time in person last November while filming a rehearsal of Disquiet band where he was playing as a drummer. During this shoot I badly injured my my feet and ended up in Vinohrady hospital for 10 days. I heard his song TRAINSPOT for the first time in the hospital while being hooked on dripfeed, high on morphium to kill all the physical pain, full of sadness, worries & painful love. I immediately loved the song once I heard it for the first time, I wanted to escape from the hospital bed, to fly away, to dance or just simply dissaper from this world but it was impossible…I was bent to the bed for the following month and was jumping on one leg with crutches til the end of the year. The long, never-ending winter has passed and many things have happened in my life – hardcore breakup & loosing a job at the same time during one cold night in Prague in the end of January – I had to touch the most painful bottom to start to live again. Slowly, all by myself, with a total emptiness both in my heart and in my head, almost broke, but accepting my destiny afterall and taking all new life challanges which were standing ahead. Reset. Restart. The recovery was and still is taking a long time, it’s a long process as the memories are always here and they are so strong that it’s hard to get them out of my mind. I started to follow a wu-wei philosophy and taking what cames across to my path, not forcing anything and taking the time, just to take my life as a game, game with unknown rules, unknown destinies, unknown destinations, unknown people crossing my path… One can understand this as a release, and indeed it was, a sort of. The song followed me on my journey as I believe that music heals, and so heals any kind of creative process…Nothing else in the world could help better. I started shooting spontaneously some images in March in Prague and the idea for the music video started to crystalize slowly in my head. Just this simple idea which was reflecting my actual situation – seeing the world in its surreal contoures, feeling as a stranger with all the memories of my unfulfilled love, always having in mind Thom York’s song “Creep” with “what the hell I’m doing here, I don’t belong here” kind of feeling and Haruki Murakami’s essay “The Sound of a Train Whistle in the Night” which is all about love, loneliness & suffering (I made it into a short film while I was alone in Japan 2 years ago, when I was feeling kind of the same but in totally different circumstances). Then I went for two weeks to Israel and finished the shooting there… With a help of great, talented, creative people whom I met on my way. And the music video, therefore, is a result of this painful, inner, deliberating trip. I gave all my soul, creative energy & love to it. I hope you will like it… I feel better now. Just my feet is still not healed until know and so isn’t my heart yet but it will come, one day… (Jested told me after that TRAINSPOT is about a small boy, maybe his son?)

Malá smrt/ Little Death (a short film)

Snímek obrazovky 2015-02-09 v 8.19.25 PM Me and my friends Jana, Jurij and Jiří (and featuring Týna as a little devilish Angel) shot and acted in a short film “A Little Death” during December Saint Nicolas weekend in 2014. We made this little film with no budget during CINEMASPOT workshop lead by Radim Špaček. It was fun, a bit of stress too and also a great challange for me to do this while I was jumping on my one leg, second one still with a big painful injury in my feet and using crutches. (yes, the crutches in the film are real, not a mere prop).

GRÁ / LOVE

I attended the 1st International Kino Kabaret in Paris in August this year and collaborated with a great director Liam from Ireland and a great actor and piano player Jean Babtiste-Ortegas. This is a result of our 2 days work…

 

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