Biennale de l’Image en Mouvement, “The Sound of Screens Imploding”
              Barbara Casavecchia
              The press schedule for the opening days of the Biennale de l’Image en Mouvement (BIM) included a special visit to CERN’s “Antimatter Factory.” Our guide was a cheerful Chinese-American engineer who laughed at my astonishment when he explained that our knowledge of the universe—stars, planets, galaxies—amounts to its visible 4 percent. The remaining 96 percent is composed of “dark matter,” i.e. something we know nothing about. Given the dim political climate around the globe, the idea of an ontological fumbling in the dark with the help of a risible fraction of enlightenment felt spot-on. As in deep space, darkness and dark energy also abound in this year’s well-researched BIM. Its thunderous title, “The Sound of Screens Imploding,” echoes the Big Bang, but also the collapse of a dying star: the Big Screen. “The long era of projection on screens is coming to an end,” curators Andrea Bellini and Andrea Lissoni state in their introductory text in the exhibition booklet, “and will give way to environments that reverberate with the radiant echo of their implosion.” It’s exciting to think of moving images as light and sonic waves expanding across space and cyberspace, past the constrains of beamers, reflective surfaces, or human vision. …
              Biennale de l’Image en Mouvement
              Barbara Casavecchia
              “Dear President, / Your profile is vague, / You have no arms, no hair, no legs, and no sex / Your enemy is your lover. / I need make-up, underwear and hormones! / Dear visitor, / Are you optimistic, / When our country is at war? / Is freedom more masculine than genocide? / Is a lie more feminine than allies? / What is the difference between terror, horror, and war? / What is the difference between museum, artwork, and enemy? / It sounds all the same to me!” The HD video Silent (2016) by Pauline Boudry and Renate Lorenz felt painfully timely on the opening night of the Biennale de l’Image en Mouvement (BIM) in Geneva, in the immediate aftermath of Donald Trump’s election to the US presidency. Zoe Leonard’s text piece I want a president (1992) was still circulating manically across social media and its comforting echo chambers, as if to compensate IRL wrongs by means of poetic justice—and there I was, upset, enraged, speechless. Silent acts as a reminder of the relation between mutism and trauma, between the deceptive multiplication of information and the actual escalation in shutting up freedom of expression and non-conforming positions, identities, agencies, bodies. …

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