Statement #04 | Markus Hanakam & Roswitha Schuller — PIVOT

Lecture performance
January 24, 2019
5 pm, Input: Apparatus–LCD (A–L)
6 pm, Screening
7 pm, Input: Mannerisms–Zapping (M–Z)

Images express social conditions, they create conventions and standards—and conversely, the social framework inevitably shapes the visual material it contains. With PIVOT, Markus Hanakam and Roswitha Schuller explore the possibilities for manipulating imaging devices and the visual worlds they create. The artist duo’s long-term research concentrates on digital and media imagery, an image format that is mobile and thus available anytime, anywhere, and which we deal with daily using idiosyncratic gestures such as swiping, panning, and tapping. The springboard for their research was the pivot function that some digital monitors offer, allowing them to be rotated 90° to display content in either horizontal or vertical format.

“Leaving the field of affirmative, consumer-oriented applications behind, we do not use the pivot function to switch digital images from portrait to landscape format but instead search for other ways to make use of this tilting and twisting,” say Hanakam and Schuller of their artistic practice, which has given rise to sculptures, videos, and lecture performances in installation settings. Against the usual trend of using digital technologies for artistic production, the duo produces handmade artefacts, applying experimental methods to exploit the combination of tangible apparatus, performative gesture, and digital imagery. As they work on developing an artistic phenomenology of the device, the artists look at possible uses and functions for digitally distorted images and reversible figures.

At Kunstraum Lakeside, Markus Hanakam and Roswitha Schuller will present to the public selected devices from their artistic toolkit—in both haptic and imaginative form. In two lectures, the artists will explain their primarily object-focused research by outlining ideas from A to Z, from apparatus to zapping. The lecture performance and installation circuit will be accompanied by a video screening and a digital reader.

Markus Hanakam (b. 1979 in Germany) lives and works in Vienna.
Roswitha Schuller (b. 1984 in Austria) lives and works in Vienna.


Markus Hanakam & Roswitha Schuller, Sleigh with Harvest Allegories (detail), 2017

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