— Delphine Bedel

Curating: The Experience of Atopia, Breda Photo 2008

26 September- 26 October 2008
Breda Photo 2008 / Lokaal 01, Breda

The Experience of Atopia.
Exhibition and Film Programme curated by
Delphine Bedel
Kamal Ajafari, Delphine Bedel, Renata Poljak, Ilya Rabinovich, Rossella Biscotti

With a very singular and strong photographic or cinematographic language, the works presented in the exhibition and the films selected for the screening, investigate the urban or political transformation -that occurred in the diverse contexts addressed by the artists- and draws unexpected and complex relations between personal memory, history and experience. Personal narratives reflect upon historical and political changes, which often find a translation into specific architectures, places and images. Buildings, industrial sites, holiday location or family houses become the central character of the works presented. The ‘return to place’, the recall of familiar locations and images or films becomes a subtle movement between architectures of memory and placelessness. Atopia, as defined by Roland Barthes, is a singular place that resists taxonomy, stereotypes and territorialisation. It is a place in movement. The exhibition offers a reflection upon the transitory structures of cultural representation and the experience of atopia.
A publication, edited by D. Bedel will be available in the exhibition.

Film Screening Saturday 27 September, 20.00
Jérôme Schlomoff, Mounir Fatmi, Ayako Yoshimura

These films present unexpected perspectives on the inescapable process of urban transformation, from the city of Amsterdam to the French suburbs or the megalopolis. Often made out of still images, and constructed on visual and poetic narratives, these films reflect upon urban palimpsests and globalization. Schlomoff and Yoshimura will introduce their film.

Breda Photo 2008 / Lokaal 01, Breda
Kloosterlaan 138, NL-4811 EE BREDA. +31 (0)76 514 19 28
Opening: Friday 26 September, 20.00 Thur-Sun, 13.00-17.00

Kamal Aljafari The Roof (Al-Sateh)
Palestine/Germany, 2006, 61’. In Arabic, Hebrew, and English with English subtitles, Colour, DigiBeta/DVD.
Part essayistic meditation, part family portrait, The Roof is an eloquent and understated exploration of physical and psychic place in the context of filmmaker Kamal Aljafari’s family history. Returning to his parents’ and grandmother’s homes in Ramleh and Jaffa, now part of Israel, Aljafari uses elegant cinematography, unhurried rhythms, and fragmented narrative to convey how space, time, and history have been molded by politics and Israeli institutionalized neglect. The roof of the title is an absent one, on the unfinished house where his family has lived since their resettlement in 1948, and it functions as a place of waiting marked by constant deferral. Curator Jean-Pierre Rehm has called the film “as much a stylistic as a political manifesto” that “reveals not so much the meaning of an absent roof, but the architecture of identity, place, and present pasts.” -Irina Leimbacher

Delphine Bedel Permanent Vacation / Camping Site, The Netherlands.
Photographic series, pigment prints (45 x 65 cm), 2006.
In the ongoing photographic project ‘Permanent vacation’,  Bedel investigates the architecture of leisure which has been planned in diverse geographical contexts. Her photographic series show amusement parks, beach resorts and camping sites, now in a state of transition. Whereas those places are usually perceived fleetingly, as mere backgrounds, leaving way to a reflection on the impact of tourism and leisure on urbanism and landscape.
Since the 1960s in the Netherlands, the state developed so-called ‘Recreative areas’, camping sites where people could go only for a weekend or vacations and were not allowed to build houses to live. With the growing speculation on the land this social projects tend to disappear, and camping sites are replaced by expensive ‘secondary’ residency. Over a period of 4 months, Bedel documented the disappearance of one camping site.

Rossela Biscotti The Sun Shines in Kiev
The Netherlands, 2006, 09’50, Russian with English subtitels. Installation: film, 3 slides projection, poster.

‘The Sun Shines in Kiev’ is a film on the life of Vladimir Shevchenko, one of the first filmmakers who was allowed access to the “red zone” after the meltdown of the nuclear power plant in Chernobyl in 1986. In the film the incident is not mentioned and there is not any visual representation of the disaster. The incident is used to reflect on the way filmmakers can document extreme events and on our sense of collective memory. 
The sun shines in Kiev uses the oral narration as a main element to create a visual context. 
In this film most of the footage is missing. All the information given is personal, fragmented and in contradiction with each other. Since the Chernobyl disaster the official information have been modified in relation to the interests of the governments. I use these contradictions to reconstruct the biography of Shevchenko to explore the ways in which history shapes individual memories.” The soundtrack is specially composed by the Italian electronic musician FRAME using pieces of music, voices and statements recorded by Vladimir Shevchenko in 1987. -R. Biscotti

Renata Poljak Great Expectations
France/ Croatia, 2005, super 16mm transferred to DVD, 17’. Co-production: Camera Lucida (Paris) and Croatian Film Club’s Association (Zagreb) supported by The Centre National de la Cinématographie (CNC) La Procirep L’ANGOA – AGICOA, The Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia, with the contribution of France 2. Director of Photography: Jean-Louis Vialard .
Man and architecture speak the same language. Human and architectural violence are the result of the same virus infection – “Great Expectations”. Reflecting on people’s inconsiderateness and about the birth of a hybrid pseudo urban context, the author has found connections and interlacing of family relations, the architectural urbicide that is taking place in Split (Croatia) and its surroundings, and the violence at football stadiums which finally led to the incident reported in the “crime section” of the daily newspaper.

Ilya Rabinovich Forgotten Memories. Kicheniev, 1999Historical Museums. Chisinau, 2008.
Colour fotografies (60 x 60 cm and 80 x 80 cm), 1999. Installation: Colour prints and texts. Work in progress, 2008.
‘The photographs of Ilya Rabinovich unfold upon the viewer like an anonymous docu-drama of seemingly empty places, buildings, domestic interiors, backyards  and schoolrooms. Photographs of idyllic sun-drenched  domestic interiors, we see a window adorned with floral curtains , surrounded by floral wallpaper , patterned blankets, a table , a chair and an old sewing machine. From behind a net curtain a glimpse of a garden is visible: it is the house of Rabinovich’s parents, where he grew up as a young boy’. (David Powell) In the court yard of this house, we see a group of children posing now for Rabinovich.
For this exhibition at Lokaal 01, Rabinovich travelled again to Moldavia and produced a new photographic series. In this project, he is investigating through specific institutional buildings the relation between the construction of national identity under the Communist era and his own childhood memories in Kisheniev. Interiors of various historical museums in Chisinau are photographed with the precise gaze of an involved viewer in search of deleted remains that once belonged to his cultural background.