MANFRED WAFFENDER LOG 2017

Documentary
May 25 - At Palatin in Mainz: Beuys, a documentary about the German sculptor and performance artist Joseph Beuys by Andres Veiel.

 

Theater
May 9 - In 2012  German actor/director Herbert Fritsch caused a sensation at Berlin’s Volksbühne with his hilarious staging of what was considered an unstagable work. Murmel Murmel is a play by Swiss artist Dieter Roth consisting of 178 pages of dialogue using only one word: "Murmel". We catch one of the last performances of the production during the International May Festival at Staatstheater Wiesbaden. Very funny! 
"A side-splittingly funny eighty minutes of mind-altering slapstick, cringe-inducing costumes and a psychedelic surging set – a Dadaistic embrace of nonsense and hilarity in glorious technicolor. You could call it a satirical comment on today’s hysterical, overexcited turbo-society or you could simply enjoy the brilliantly choreographed insanity." (Edinburgh International Festival)

 

Exhibition
April 27 -  Duesseldorf, NRW-Forum: Peter Lindbergh/Garry Winogrand: Women On Street. "Garry Winogrand, who died in 1984, ranks among the most important exponents of street photography and, from the mid-1970s, he played a decisive role in establishing photography in the context of contemporary art. His frequently falling lines, a direct and intuitive approach to his subject and an insightful view of the cosmos of the street are the features of his distinctive style. Peter Lindbergh is regarded as one of the best living photographers and a star of fashion photography... In his photographs he turns against the ideal of beauty prescribed by the fashion world and he often shows a beauty that has been attained ‘through experiences, through heartbreaks, through having children’, as Cindy Crawford told ICON, a German lifestyle magazine, in 2015."

 

Cherry Tree
April 9 -  "How many, many things they call to mind - these cherry blossoms."
(Basho Matsuo, 1644 - 1694)

 

PLACES_IN_TIME | 24seascapes
April 6 - As of now available on DVD through Gruenrekorder: PLACES_IN_TIME | 24seascapes, 24 audiovisual moods from New Zealand and Rarotonga; 60 min (each take is 2’30“ in duration), HD, stereo. It is the first part of the production I shot between October 15 and February 16 in New Zealand. The main part of the sabbatical project, a portrait about NZ sound artist John Cousins (JC&The University of the Waves), is still in the making.

 

Teaching
April 4 - Start of the summer term at the Institute For Music And Media in Duesseldorf.

 

Cherry Tree
March 27 -  The nights are still cold. During the day the buds stretch towards the sun.

 

Sitting
March 13 to 19 - Spring Sesshin with Paul Shepherd at Felsentor above Lake Lucerne.

 

Dance
March 12 - Magma an evening with two dance pieces at Staatstheater Mainz: Fieber by Alessandra Corti and Fall Seven Times by Guy Nader & Maria Campos. Fall Seven Times is inspired by J.G. Ballard’s poem What I believe, originally published in 1984. Described as “part poem part prayer” it offers a personal and amusing catalog of tropes and memes, themes, and influences which are to be found in the English writer’s work:
“I believe in the power of the imagination to remake the world, to release the truth within us, to hold back the night, to transcend death, to charm motorways, to ingratiate ourselves with birds, to enlist the confidences of madmen. I believe in my own obsessions, in the beauty of the car crash, in the peace of the submerged forest, in the excitements of the deserted holiday beach, in the elegance of automobile graveyards, in the mystery of multi-storey car parks, in the poetry of abandoned hotels. I believe in the forgotten runways of Wake Island, pointing towards the Pacifics of our imaginations. ...
I believe in pain.
I believe in despair.
I believe in all children.
I believe in maps, diagrams, codes, chess-games, puzzles, airline timetables, airport indicator signs.
I believe all excuses.
I believe all reasons.
I believe all hallucinations.
I believe all anger.
I believe all mythologies, memories, lies, fantasies, evasions.
I believe in the mystery and melancholy of a hand, in the kindness of trees, in the wisdom of light.”


 

Movies
March 2 - I see (!) and hear (!) Notes on Blindness, an unusual, ambitious film by British artists Peter Middleton and James Spinney. "After losing sight, John Hull knew that if he did not try to understand blindness it would destroy him. In 1983 he began keeping an audio diary. Over three years he recorded over sixteen hours of material, a unique testimony of loss, rebirth and renewal, excavating the interior world of blindness. Published in 1990, the diaries were described by author and neurologist Oliver Sacks as, ‘A masterpiece… The most precise, deep and beautiful account of blindness I have ever read.’ "

 

Reading
February 5 - The Invention of Nature - Alexander von Humboldt’s New World, a biography by Andrea Wulf. “‘Nature every where speaks to man in a voice’, Humboldt said, that is ‘familiar to his soul’. These sounds were like voices from beyond the ocean that transported him in an instant from one hemisphere to another. Like the tentative pencil lines in a sketch, his new understanding of nature, based on scientific observations and feelings, was beginning to emerge. Memories and emotional responses, Humboldt realized, would always form part of man’s experience and understanding  of nature. Imagination was like ‘a balm of miraculous healing properties’, he said.”

 

Documentary
January 20 - On the eve of the inauguration of Donald Trump I watch Requiem for the American Dream - Noam Chomsky and the Principles of Concentration of Wealth and Power, a documentary film by directors/producers Peter Hutchison, Kelly Nyks and Jared P. Scott. ”Through interviews filmed over four years, Chomsky unpacks the principles that have brought us to the crossroads of historically unprecedented inequality...Profoundly personal and thought provoking, Chomsky provides penetrating insight into what may well be the lasting legacy of our time – the death of the middle class, and swan song of functioning democracy. A potent reminder that power ultimately rests in the hands of the governed, ’Requiem’ is required viewing for all who maintain hope in a shared stake in the future.”

 

Cherry Tree
January 15 - Theft of prayer flags - thief caught red-handed.

 

New Year
January 1 - New Year’s walk with friends in an enchanted ice covered forest near Darmstadt.