Marcel Odenbach one of the most important contemporary video artists, has overwritten his first solo exhibition at Kunsthalle Wien with the title of a poem by Ingeborg Bachmann. Beweis zu nichts (Proof of Nothing) deals with the persistence of the victim-perpetrator structure within post-war society.
Beweis zu nichts (Proof of Nothing) is also the title Odenbach has given to his new film, focusing on the memorial Bertolt Brecht, together with sculptor Fritz Cremer, designed for the former concentration camp Buchenwald. His film works observe international crises and the reconciliation of populations following armed conflicts or genocide, illustrating the fact that dealing with the past is not only a European difficulty. Be it the video installation In stillen Teichen lauern Krokodile/ In Still Waters Crocodiles Lurk, which deals with the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, or Im Kreise drehen/Turning in Circles, another film concerning a memorial (in this case at the site of the former concentration camp Majdanek), Odenbach repeatedly considers social justice. In approaching the problem of dealing with the past, Odenbach’s works reflect on the resonance of Nazism in the present. The artist observes various cultures and political constellations, allowing them to influence his work. Reflections on the familiar and the foreign, on his own biography and the biographies of others, are vital motifs in his work that put forth arguments in such a way that are as aesthetic as they are political.
Marcel Odenbach, *1953 in Cologne, lives and works in Cologne and Berlin.
Curator: Vanessa Joan Müller