2001, 10 min
music: tamtam (Sam Auinger, Hannes Strobl)
video: Dietmar Offenhuber
"The freeway system in its totality is now a single comprehensible place, a coherent state of mind, a complete way of life" - Reyner Banham
Perceiving perception: Through media, this is simultaneously possible and impossible. The important thing about moving images is what is moving rather than what is causing the movement. But the fact sometimes tends to be forgotten that the animated image could not exist without the viewer´s illusionary assumption that he or she is not seeing individual frames but continuous motion. As a result, it should not surprise when film or videographic experiments are at their core reflections on forms of perception conveyed through various media, their purpose to make accessible the circumstances under which sensuous experience takes place, which are dictated by the media. This all applies to besenbahn, though the problem is made more complex by the reference to perception which itself requires the use of technical apparatus.
It´s subject is not ”natural” perception, but perception put in motion by modern means of transportation, and therefore implicitly the history of an epochal transformation of the way in which time and space is experienced. It has come to a preliminary end in suitable contexts – for example cities such as Los Angeles, which has been shaped by the history of motorization – where moving perception now seems to be regarded as integral to natural perception.
The thesis presented by besenbahn in this regard would therefore be that the specifically aesthetic quality of such animated perception is absent from the forms of audiovisual representation which are already considered natural (such as indicating movement by means of a tracking shot): In its fragmentation of the continuum of perception, the “subjective geometry which defines space through intervals of time” (Dietmar Offenhuber) illustrates a manner of experience which could remain submerged because it is already so familiar.
Text: Vrääth Öhner, Translation: Steve Wilder
Original 4:3 PAL Video footage (720x576) upscaled with Gigapixel AI and converted to 16:9 1080p format.