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VIDEOTANK #29

Ever-normal Granary

September 7 – October 7, 2023

Artist

Marlies Pöeschl

Overview

In the year in which this film is set, there was no summer. The grain remained in the ground. Apparently, it was safely stored in a large brick building. This film shifts through a labyrinthine structure, looking at the idea and architecture of the “ever normal granary”. This refers to an idea originally from China, of a grain storage system that balances supply and demand, and which offers stability due to its constant stock levels. But the seeming normality of the granary is disrupted, and the grain starts to disappear. In the voice-over, a manager and a mouse can be heard negotiating questions of economics, botany, food security, food speculation and logistics.

This film essay contrasts industrial food production with indigenous ecological perspectives and embodied knowledge: In the second part of the film, the performers awake from a long sleep. The choreography they perform refers to the book Braiding Sweetgrass (2013) by US plant ecologist Robin Wall Kimmerer. The relationship between dance and composition, which is made up of natural, technological, human and more-than-human sounds, is an attempt to aesthetically reframe and rethink the relationship to the environment.

Artist

Marlies Pöschl is an artist, filmmaker, curator and educator. She is currently based in Vienna (AT) and works internationally. Pöschl teaches at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. As co-founder and chairperson of The Golden Pixel Cooperative, an association for moving images, she has developed artistic-curatorial strategies for exhibitions, screenings and projects in public space with a focus on feminism and ecology.

Pöschl has received various prizes for her work: in 2021 she was awarded with the Prize for Innovative Cinema (Diagonale) as part of The Golden Pixel Cooperative as well as the Young Artist’s Award (City of Vienna) for her individual work. Her films and installations have been shown in several solo presentations, most recently at Kunstverein Ludwigshafen, DE (2022), Salzburger Kunstverein, AT (2021), CAC Brétigny, (2018) and MUSA, Vienna, AT (2016). She has participated in biennales and film festivals such as the Vienna Biennale for Change (AT), Antimatter media art festival (CA), Edinburgh International Film Festival (GB), Cinema Verité (IR), Diagonale (AT) and others.