Exhibition Preview and Artist Talk – Mario Pfeifer

Mario Pfeifer, Yet Untitled (“Pieces of Nature”), 2008. Film Stills. © KOCH OBERHUBER WOLFF

18 April 2012


North Member Programme

Circa Screen
The Place, Athenaeum Street
Sunderland, SR1 1QX

Talk starts at 19.00

Join us for the opportunity to hear Berlin-based film-making artist Mario Pfeifer discuss his work at CIRCA Screen, Sunderland, as part of the preview of his new exhibition.

Pfeifer’s work explores the structures and conventions in the medium of film, in locations ranging from Mumbai to California to the Western Sahara. He often takes as his starting point the writings and visual works of other contemporary artists and film-makers, such as Jeff Wall, Louis Malle, Lewis Baltz or Michael Haneke. He weaves further cross-cultural art historical and filmic references into his richly layered practice.

In this, the first exhibition in the UK of Pfeifer’s work, Circa Screen presents Yet Untitled (“Pieces of Nature”), 2008. In this 11.5-minute film (16mm transferred to HD video), the artist reveals the relationships between all those typically found on a film set – actors, directors and members of the crew – in a carefully choreographed scene. It appears to be an authentic casting session but culminates in revealing its own artifice, that everyone is, in fact, an actor. The composition refers to the light-box photograph, Picture for Women, 1979, by Jeff Wall, which in itself draws on the famous painting by Edouard Manet, A Bar at the Folies-Bergère, 1882. Thus Pfeifer’s work neatly spans the history of the visual image in art, from oil painting, to photography, to film, to video.

Born in 1981, in Dresden, Pfeifer was awarded the Video Art Prize (VideoKunstPreis) Bremen in 2010 and has upcoming exhibitions at MMK (Museum für Moderne Kunst), Frankfurt; The Cultural Centre of Brugge, Belgium; and will complete Conversation Piece [Western Sahara], produced during a residency in Morocco and the Sahara desert. Pfeifer is represented by the gallery KOW Berlin where his first gallery solo exhibition took place in 2011.

This event is part of a series of events programmed by the Contemporary Art Society in the North East. Membership costs £50 per year / £25 for students.

If you are not yet a member and would like to join, or to receive further information about the organisation and its activities, please contact Rebecca Morrill at rebecca@contemporaryartsociety.org or call 07815 830 182.


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