Stromboli

Video installation, 4 videos, 6 hours 40 minutes each
Thesis exhibition, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, June 2010

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This work is based on the manual production of bread made of sourdough. As in many of my previous works, I am performing myself.
Bread is in most civilizations a symbol of food. Bread has a sacral as well as an existential meaning.
With reference to Peter Kubelka who said that cooking is the oldest creative activity, the making of bread can be literally seen as plastic art if you define art as a creative process which requires energy and special abilities in order to express yourself.
The fermentation process of sourdough as well as of breaddough needs a certain time. I have used the time of fermentation in order to produce further sourdoughs and breaddoughs: Starting with 4 sourdoughs I have produced within 6 hours and 40 minutes further 4 sourdoughs and 8 breaddoughs, in total I have made 32 loaves of bread.
4 video cameras have documented this performance. The video material of the 4 camera angles (SD DV-Pal) is shown in full lenght on 4 CRT-displays with original sound.
Time is an essential element of this work: The course of the performance is determined by the sourdough and the breaddough, especially by the time needed for fermentation. Apart from the handling of time, patience is an important aspect, particularly with respect to the technical possibilities that determine our age.

Camera, lighting: Thomas Oswald, Michael Steinhauser
Postproduction: Anya Kirsten, Astrid Friedl
Screen-play, peformance: Astrid Friedl
Right hand: Stefan Marks
Consultants: Harun Farocki, Maren Grimm
Technical support: Ulf Freyhoff, Paul Geisler, David Burkhard
Special thanks to: Robert Bramkamp, Ute Janssen, Association of Bakeries Hamburg, Mumok Vienna

Photos: Astrid Friedl