Goethe-Institut Vilnius
Lecture on German video art by Marcel Odenbach: X.19. 18:00

The Goethe-Institut together with the Contemporary Art Centre Vilnius presents the exhibition ‘Four decades of video art’ which is dedicated to preserving and nourishing video heritage. The exhibition introduces German video art from 1963 to the present.

Hardware for storing electronic data is not durable. Museums and collectors across the globe face the dilemma of ‘white noise’ being noticed whilst screening videos. There is the possible horror of the total loss of digital data and consequential loss of work. Many artists work with video tape, which they use for recordings, installations or projections, and also therefore increases the number of people who would like to solve this problem. Though the classic meanings of video art today don’t have such a big impact as they did when the media was first used, we may, however, question what influenced the success of this specific media?
The project ’ Erbe’ (‘Four decades of video art – digital heritage’) was initiated by Cultural foundation of Federation of Germany. It seeks to preserve the heritage of video art – one of the most important art forms of 20th century. For the first time in Germany five museums initiated a project which was later transformed into an art exhibition. The project was led by Karlsruhe Art and Media Technology Center and North Rhine-Westphalia Art Museum K21 in Düsseldorf. Other partners are: Art House of city Bremen, München Lenbachhaus gallery and Museum of Figurative art in Leipzig. For this reason, the Museum of city Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia K21 Art Museum held symposium in which authors of unknown video works were successfully ascertained, copies of works were compared, evaluated and preserved in high quality digital media. This allowed the beginning of the restoration of selected video tapes.

In summer 2004, a jury made up of Dieter Daniels, Rudolf Frieling, Susanne Gaensheimer, Søren Grammel, Wulf Herzogenrath, Nan Hoover, Doris Krystof selected 56 of the best works from 1963 until the present day. These works are represented in the exhibition ‘Four decades of video art’ as an archive of German video art. Each part of this exhibition represents a particular theme and particular work in a particular context.

At 18:00 on 2 October at CAC Cafe one of the most prominent German video artists – Marcel Odenbach will hold a lecture on German video art. Born in 1953 in Köln, the Marcel Odenbach studied architecture, history of art and semiotics at Aachen’s Technical University. Since 1976 he has been working with video materials by practicing performances, installations and video films. Since 1992 he has been teaching in the national university of visual art in Karlsruhe and in Köln’s High Art School for media. He now lives and works in Köln.