January 17, 2016 - Paço das Artes - Harun Farocki: Programming the Visible
January 17, 2016

Paço das Artes

Harun Farocki, Parallel II from the series “Parallel," 2014. Video, color, sound, 9 minutes. © Harun Farocki Filmproduktion.

Harun Farocki
Programming the Visible
January 28–March 27, 2016

Paço das Artes
Cidade Universitária
Av. da Universidade 1
São Paulo-SP
Hours: Wednesday–Friday 10am–7pm,
Saturday–Sunday 11am–6pm

T +55 11 3814 3842

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Paço das Artes is pleased to present the exhibition Programming the Visible, curated by Jane de Almeida, with six works by the artist and filmmaker Harun Farocki: Parallel I-IV (2012–14), Interface (1995), and the interview Catch Phrases – Catch Images. A Conversation with Vilém Flusser (1986).

The exhibition aims to reflect on the nature of 21st century images, exploring the displacement of the images captured by optical devices to computer-generated imagery. The latest works by Farocki, Parallel I-IV, address the images of computer games, investigating their relationship with the "first person," and reality as an "absent referent" constructed by algorithms. When questioning these new images, Farocki not only rescues the reflection on the invention of perspective in the construction of the Renaissance universe, but also the debate on photography as a medium that liberates painting from the search of likeness. He asks if computers will perform functions previously assumed by film which, in turn, will be free for other functions. He also says that the creators of computer-generated images do not want to attract a "bunch of Greek birds," referring to Zeuxis and the derision of the grapes, but instead to produce the creatures that will inhabit their paradise.

Harun Farocki is an artist and filmmaker internationally recognized for his radical political readings of the images of the world. Having made films inspired by Brecht and Godard, as well as being recognized for his film essays, Farocki in recent years focused his work within the universe of contemporary art, making several film installations. Farocki also created collaborative works for public spaces, workshops, edited and produced films, and wrote intellectual and critical works about the politics of image.

After 2007, the simulations and images generated by computers were questioned by Farocki. This is the focal point of the exhibition Programming the Visible. However, to put into perspective the issues that are now being directed at the images generated by algorithms, two of his previous works will be presented: Interface (1995) and Catch Phrases – Catch Images. A conversation with Vilém Flusser (1986).

In the first work, Farocki examines his own gesture of making films from existing images without producing new ones. This work marks the passage of the artist into the world of art institutions. The second work is an interview by Farocki in which he asks Flusser to analyze the images, words, and fonts of the German tabloid Bild Zeitung. Flusser’s books about photography and technical images have influenced numerous works by the artist.  These last two works dialogue with the recent work, demonstrating Farocki's persuasive way of limitlessly questioning the images regarding the medium through which they are produced.

"Harun Farocki is not seduced by the new image produced by contemporary media, nor is he dominated by the fetish of the images produced by the old media. With his works, the parallel universes of computer games encounter the parallel histories of the images and their compositions," affirms Jane de Almeida.

A selection of films from his extensive production will be presented at CINUSP (Cinema da USP) from February 1 to 21.

A book with articles about Parallel and Harun Farocki's works will also be published in partnership with CINUSP, including the remarkable text of the film-installation Interface and articles by Thomas Elsaesser, Priscila Arantes, Arlindo Machado, Erika Balsom, among others.

Paço das Artes
Paço das Artes
, created in March 1970, is an institution connected to the State of São Paulo Secretary of Culture and it is located in a modernist architecture building at the University of São Paulo (USP) campus. The gallery aims to organize and maintain contemporary art exhibitions, courses, lectures, workshops, conferences and artistic exchanges. The institution also encourages the production of works, the training of new practitioners, such as young critics, curators and artists, and disseminates national and international contemporary art, in addition to promoting subjects related to the art field.

According to Priscila Arantes, Paço das Artes director and curator "it is a privilege to receive the exhibition with works by Harun Farocki, an artist that reverberates issues of the contemporary world in his works with a reflective look."

Free entrance
Free guided visits: educativo [​at​] pacodasartes.org.br

Paço das Artes
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Programming the Visible
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