©Courtesy of Artists & Diskurs Berlin
IT MAY SOUND UTOPIAN / Nr. 9
YOU ARE HERE
27.05. - 09.06.
There is something surprisingly charming about the simplicity of a camera-obscura.
We might assume that elements related both to the workings of our own sight, coordinated between the eye and the brain, and the recording of images inside a camera - light, shape, colour, perspective, etc - correspond with a whole swathe of unimaginably complex processes beyond our reasonable field of understanding. And yet, the phenomenon of a camera-obscura is amongst the most effective and simple tools enabling us to not only comprehend but actually experience how a camera works, as here we can physically enter inside one. We can see with our own eyes how light travels in straight lines, infiltrating the inside a room and organising against its surfaces, by passing through an aperture and then filling an interior space with a projection of the outside world. Down is up and up is down inside what Mozi, an early Chinese philosopher in the first known record of a camera-obscura, circa 470BCE, described as the ‘treasure house’.
From a place of both safety and privacy, we can observe a small portion of life existing within the city and, all too easily, become mesmerised by it.
YOU ARE HERE is a camera-obscura installation piece designed for the exhibition relay It May Sound Utopian at DISKURS Berlin. This installation will be exhibited from May 27th at DISKURS Berlin for two weeks. Throughout the duration of the exhibition, the doors to the gallery will remain closed and viewers will instead be forced to engage with the installation through the windows of the gallery only, thereby positioning themselves within the artwork. The title of the installation acts as both a guide and a cold fact. When observing the projection made by the camera-obscura we are reminded that, undoubtedly, we are here and nowhere else.
As we all continue to live through this unfamiliar and precarious period of time as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, when so many truths and knowns are under new scrutiny and with an increasing amount of our experiences and interactions now taking place on the surface of a digital screen, perhaps modest tools are needed most in order to remind us where we truly are.
You are here, of course.
Jeremy Philip Knowles is a British lens-based artist interested in the city and how we, as inhabitants, activate it.
In 2016 Jeremy moved from London to Berlin. He has since made this city the subject of an ongoing photographic study that seeks to give greater visibility to the mundane elements of daily life that usually pass us by. By bringing greater prominence and visibility to the accidental, the miraculous and the comical, we are challenged by Jeremy’s projects and photo series to reconsider the weight of our daily interactions with things and people and meditate on what happens when we think nothing is happening.
©Courtesy of Artists & Diskurs Berlin
REAL, SYMBOLIC, IMAGINARY
Due to the increasing spread of COVID-19 REAL, SYMBOLIC, IMAGINARY postponed to a later date. We will continue to update the information on this website as well as through our social media channels.
Ka Hee JEONG
‘I began with the Imaginary, I then had to chew on the story of the Symbolic ... and I finished by putting out for you this famous Real’ – Jacques Lacan
The title of this project Real, Symbolic, Imaginary, is inspired by Jacques Lacan’s three psychoanalytic orders. These fundamental dimensions need to be discussed not only in the aspects of psychical processes but also in understanding the real-life of North Koreans.
While South Korea is understood in various perspectives with its active interaction around the world, North Korea is often seen unilaterally and passively through mass communications or clips from foreign visitors. There have been several recent exhibitions abroad on North Korea, in Gwangju and at the Busan Biennial. Artworks from North Korea were presented, and some were even by a North Korea defectors. Most of the time, North Korea’s political issues, ideology and armaments are what catch the eye of the outer worlds. However, the general populations’ lives, their dreams, families, love, and friendships, are barely known. The DISKURS Berlin project aims to turn away from what is known, reported and sensationalized and turns instead toward the people, the mundane and the daily lives of North Koreans.
Hence, political ideology will be excluded from the project. The invited artists from South Korea and Berlin will explore materials from North Korea collected on a research trip by Jung Me Chai, they include linguistic books, modern comics, medical books, movies and television series. The artists will use these source materials and their artistic practice to present the audience with original artworks that actively interprets the daily lives of North Koreans, escaping from current perceptions of the country. Moreover, they will enter into a critical examination of these concepts and open up a dialogue that moves beyond monolithic narratives.
Last year Berlin celebrated 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall. Through its history, Berlin is now seen as a symbol of freedom and liberal expression.
Real, Symbolic, Imaginary expects the positive synergy between the exhibition and the symbolic place Berlin.
The project Real, Symbolic, Imaginary attempts to transport an emancipatory alternative into the public consciousness in this critical era. It will be a platform where two worlds of North and South Korea meet and understand each other for the better.
Jung Me Chai