Shifting Schisms

I don’t ever blink, honestly.Ridley Scott


18.04.-04.05.2008 / OPENING: 18.04.2008 / 19.00-22.00

Leander Djønne, Anne Sofie Vistven, Matias Faldbakken, Anders Marius Henriksen, Josefine Lyche, Kristian Skylstad, Stian Gabrielsen, Munan Øvrelid, Lotte Konow Lund, Jon Eirik Kopperud & Saman Kamyab, PURGA

I’ve always been concerned with the limitations of working with fine arts, in the sense that it could never compete with the impact cinema has in describing life. Somehow every singular art piece becomes zeroed out by other works in a group show, in the sense that the different media compete with each other and will seldom be united in one single body. Quite the opposite of Cinema, where every element is strengthening or destroying the big picture, not any element in particular.

My most vivid memories are from great movies, but some of my most disturbing memories deals with really bad ones. Fragments of these are always interfering with my mental map, and I can’t even imagine a world where these distractions weren’t present. Somehow I think people live their lives through the idea that life is somehow a movie, and that the memories of it should be like a script, with beautiful actors, magnificent soundtrack, great photography, vivid scenery and of course a very interesting and meaningful plot. The life most people lead, though, will look more like the credits of a movie. You will see the names involved in the drama running down the page, disappearing into nothingness, but what’s beneath the singular background, most of the time, is completely black.

We can remember only fragments of who were involved in it’s production, and our memories are mostly unfactual. We throw away the ugly parts and recycle it to more than its worth. Filtering dirt into sand. In that sense life is cinema, and cinema is life. Today it’s hard to describe the one without the other.

Kristian Skylstad

When Schindler’s List hit Norwegian cinemas in 1994, it was mandatory viewing for my entire school. We were told it was hugely important to see it in order for us to form an accurate picture of the atrocities of the second world war. For some reason the only character in the movie I fully believed in was Ralph Fiennes’ portrayal of SS officer Amon Göth. He was the only one who resembled the total evilness with which the Nazis had been described to me since childhood. Fiennes might even have underplayed Göth in that sense, while conversely Liam Neeson’s Oskar Schindler seemed too altruistic, too caring – great acting, but too studied.

Thinking back, I’m wondering when or how movies became an agency for production of historical “truth”, if there’s a kernel of truth inherent to the actual projected image. That has been there since the first silent movies – from when an approaching train on screen would send audiences screaming out of the cinema. Or this might be a misconception on my part. The truth doesn’t exist in the films themselves, but with our compartmentalisation of them afterwards; Schindler’s List is an accurate portrayal of the events of
World War 2 and transcends some barrier from merely entertainment to something we allow to influence our view on history, while a film like The Dirty Dozen, does not.

But when remembering how my history teacher insisted on the accuracy of Schindler’s List, how those particular 195 minutes of film were equal to any first hand testimony or historical artefact, it becomes an agency deserving some sort of deconstruction. Which is what Shifting Schisms could be said to be about. Another thing it is probably about is artists who like to view a lot of movies.

Anders Marius Henriksen


Ebbellsgate 4

0183 Oslo

Opening times: Thursday – Sunday 12-17

Utstillingen er støttet av Norsk Kulturråd.

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