Die Roten Khmer und die Folgen. Dokumentation als künstlerische Erinnerungsarbeit
Präsentationen und Gespräche / Presentations and talks
17 Uhr / 5 p.m.
Einführung in die Thematik / Introduction
Vortrag und Gespräch von und mit / Lecture and talk with
Erin Gleeson (Artistic Director Sa Sa Bassac) und / and
Vuth Lyno (Artistic Director Sa Sa Art Projects)
18 Uhr / 6 p.m.
Michael Laub: Burgportraits Vienna (2011), Portrait Series Battambang (2012-2014), Dance Portraits Cambodia (2015)
Präsentation von Michael Laub zu seiner künstlerischen Arbeit weltweit und in Kambodscha /
Presentation by Michael Laub on his artistic practice worldwide and in Cambodia
Gespräch von /talk by
Michael Laub (Director-Choreographer, Founder of Remote Control Productions) und / and
Johannes Odenthal (Programmbeauftragter der Akademie der Künste)
- Pause / break –
19.30 Uhr / 7.30 p.m.
Tim Page: Photographer of the Vietnam War and the documentation of recent Cambodia
Präsentation von Tim Page zu seiner fotografischen Arbeit im Vietnam Krieg und in Kambodscha /
Presentation by Tim Page on his photographic work in the Vietnam War and in Cambodia
Gespräch von / talk by Tim Page (Photographer) und / and Nico Mesterharm (Documentary Filmmaker and Founder of Meta House Phnom Penh)
20.30 Uhr / 8.30 p.m.
Abschlussdiskussion / Discussion
Mit / with Erin Gleeson, Michael Laub, Nico Mesterharm, Johannes Odenthal, Tim Page, Khvay Samnang, Vandy Rattana und Vuth Lyno.
In englischer Sprache
has had a long standing interest with Cambodia, lead by cinematic and music references ranging from ‘Apocalypse Now’, the documentaries of Rithy Panh, the original Khmer Rock music from the 1960’s all the way to a new generation of sounds and contemporary lens-based work, all of which Laub rediscovered while based between Phnom Penh and Battambang while conducting a workshop at the NGO Phare Ponleu Selpak (PPS) in 2010.
While working there it quickly became apparent to him that there was ample potential to further his ongoing 'Portrait Series' there. The last installment of which, was 'Burg Portraits' Vienna (2011). The stark differences in environment and production means between the two locations made it all the more challenging as one of the main elements in Laubs' interest in the 'Portrait Series' (2012 - to date) is to verify whether he can approach individuals in the same manner and within the same format, no matter what the geographical / cultural differences are. It soon became apparent that the theatrical rendition of the project was nearly impossible due to logistical problems and as Laubs' film-maker colleague Ebru Karaca was present with her camera, the decision to adapt to video mode was taken on the spot in the middle of the whole process, to create an incidental piece of sorts. The transition to video was not deemed too problematic, as video footage of actors who had difficulty reproducing their first take, had normally been used as an intrinsic element of the live portraits. As Laub does not consider himself a documentary film-maker, his intention in actuality was to work with local Cambodians in a contemporary medium with contemporary thematics including those of fictitious nature.
The final result constitutes, even more so than usual with the 'Portrait Series', a mixture of spontaneous presentation (first takes of interviews and auditions) as well as stylised and rehearsed material resulting from the workshops. As usual in within the series the result highlights the individual's differences as much as their similarities. They offer a subjective reflection of the environment they evolve in. The ‘Portrait Series’ projects eschew almost all theatrics and strip the performer’s role down to oftentimes-intimate biographical details. The focus is set on both authenticity and the artificial.
The cast as in other prior locations includes both professionals and non-professionals and is drawn from members of PPS's employees, circus and theatre groups as well as individuals from the communities surrounding it (a security guard, an ex-student who became a recognised painter, expats residing near by, farmers, women selling produce around the compound, local technicians working on the video, scavengers taking classes at PPS etc).
The ‘Portrait Series’ is an endeavour wherein he tests theater’s global vocabulary. The idea being that virtually any entity comprising interesting characters can be formatted for a ‘Portrait Series’ show.
The final product became a one-hour twenty-six minute linear video projection entitled 'Portrait Series Battambang' premiering at HAU Hebbel am Ufer in Berlin during the ‘Staging Cambodia’ festival in 2014. A separate 10 screen video installation comprising of elements of the film is scheduled to premier later in 2015.
Having filmed three forms of Khmer dance (Folk, Madison and Classical Apsara) while on subsequent work visits to Cambodia, Laub then decided to create a large scale video-installation comprised strictly of Cambodian dance, (9 simultaneous projections with individual sound - all in portrait format, running as loops) in an attempt to encapsulate the majority of dance practiced in Cambodia today, ranging from Classical: Apsara, Ramvong (folk / social dance), Madison (a popular form of line dance typically presented at weddings) to contemporary Western style dance (as seen in night clubs). The result of which will form the new video installation ‘Dance Portraits Cambodia’
During the presentation at the AdK, Laub will present approximately ten minutes of material from the 'Portrait Series Battambang’ (2012-2014) work as well as 10 minutes from the new work in progress (as yet unreleased) ‘Dance Portraits Cambodia’ (2015).
Further information on Michael Laub can be viewed at http://www.michael-laub.com