optimistic disease facility
optimistic decease facility

Jan Hendrik Brueggemeier was commissioned to design the soundtrack for the film Optimistic Disease Facility: A documentary film about the fine artist Boris Lurie, a co-founder of the art movement NO!Art and Nazi concentration camp prisoner. Directed by Naomi Tereza Salmon.

(c) Buchenwald and Mittelbau- Dora Memorials Foundation – English with German subtitles – 58′ 37” – DVD, PAL

From the NO!art website:

“The life and work of Boris Lurie creates a radical, brusque, and at the same time a poetic cosmos. In New York where Lurie lives within his collages, the experience of the Nazi concentration camps seeps through everything. Apartment studio and laboratory all reflect a very personal artistic view of the past which surrounds him in the present.

After meeting the artist Naomi Tereza Salmon (who lives and works in Germany), at Buchenwald during the retrospective exhibition of his works in 1998/99, he gave her permission to document his apartment, studio and storage space. A dialogue developed, covering a range of issues, mainly about the past, about living in New York, about the Palestinian issue, including discussions on Stalin and capitalism.

The film is a result of this encounter, laconically trying to capture the authentic situation, and was made as a low budget project. Considering the fact that Lurie is the founder of the No!art movement, the making of the film is inspired by its manifest, which presents an opposition to american mass culture and to the commercalizing process of art, putting in question the scene of mainstream and pop art, creating a genuine ideological and fundamental aesthetic approach of its own.

The music, which was composed specifically for this purpose by the German music and internet performer Jan Brüggemeier (pingfm – internet radio broadcasting), serves as an adhesive as well as an interpretative component. An examination of the metaphysical space, focusing on the encounter between the two artists and the experiences of each of them with their immediate surrounding takes place. The film offers no answers but presents the questions which arise in it in a clear way for the viewer to reflect on them.”

More information about Naomi T. Salmon

NO!Art website

Naomi T. Salmon’s website

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Together with the British painter Will Martyr and Jan Hendrik Brüggemeier have developed a series of temporary game courts in the public space. Commissioned for the to design an intervention for the public square in front of the Theaterhaus Jena, Germany, it turned out that this square used to be main auditory hall of the venue, which once was re-designed by Walter Gropius, the director of the Bauhaus school.

Vorplatzspiele’, intrigued by the transition of the public space of a theatre in a societal sense to a more physical public space of the square, questions a new kind of performer: who are the urban performer?

With the game court a framework is provided ready and open to be explored. The design of the game court can be on one hand be seen as a bastardization of existing popular sport games e.g. soccer and basket ball and their very familiar lineaments. On the other hand it echoes the notion of the game as a driving force in the legendary didactics of the Bauhaus, as well as its idiosyncratic play with rigid geometry as present in the work of modern painter like Wassily Kandinsky or the performance work of Oskar Schlemmer.


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SCHILLERMOB – Thrilling Figures: Lawless Sound Thieves and Picture Robbers

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From May until June 2005 John Heck (Tape-beatles), Jan Hendrik Brueggemeier (pingfm), Daniel Ziethen and Sebastian Rallo conceived and executed a row of workshops on STREET-ART and AUDIO/VIDEO-Collage with Thuringian teenagers from 14 to 18 years old at the Cops+Robbers Festival in Weimar.

Departing from the call of the French Revolution (“fraternité, liberté, egalité”), today the word “free” is influenced by the commercial sense meaning “gratis”, or “free in price”.

Theft as a form of illegal appropriation appears in problems in current production techniques and the production of culture in the areas of media and music. The discussion about rights of usage in media development (music downloads) plays as much of a role here as contemporary music techniques, for example sampling different sound fragments to make a new piece of music.

Schiller’s robber figures are an interesting parallel in this respect, since they also decided to lead an ostensibly illegal way of life. Their motivation for this came from idealism and love of freedom however. Subsequent to this is Schiller’s idea of the importance role of aesthetics in society as a regulator.

Aesthetics are however always something to be shared, to be adopted, borrowed, taken, stolen and copied. This implies that every artwork is theft, adoption or predation of intellectual images and ideas. It does not become criminal through theft, but through assertion of ownership. The increasing commercialisation and exclusivity of common goods such as culture and language make Schiller’s artistic autonomy appear utopian.SCHILLERMOB flyer front

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