FLAG / RE-ENACTMENT
Project by Anna Jermolaewa for the Museum of the History of Photography
Anna Jermolaewa was born in St. Petersburg in 1970 and has been based in Vienna since 1989. She works in a variety of media, including video, photography, and installation. Often her work is inspired by her own personal experience of migration and is focusing on political themes, historical processes and social structures in everyday life that she analyzes through her work. In the context of the festival, Anna Jermolaewa will present her photographic work Flag / Re-enactment. The source of inspiration for her work was Sergei Eisenstein’s famous silent film Battleship Potemkin (1925) produced by Mosfilm. The plot of the film is a free interpretation of the actual events of the 1905 revolution when the crew of the Russian battleship Potemkin rebelled against their officers. In the last chapter of the film, a red flag is hoisted as a symbol that the political system had changed. Eisenstein intentionally shot the scene with a white flag so he could later colorize it – frame by frame, 108 times – in revolutionary red. This technical clue and the aesthetically and symbolically striking element of the red flag in otherwise black-and-white scenes made Eisenstein internationally famous, the film is also considered one of the first color films in history. Jermolaewa used the 108 images of this particular scene from Eisenstein‘s film that the Deutsche Kinemathek / Museum für Film und Fernsehen in Berlin scanned for her in high resolution in order to repeat the act of colorizing. The term “re-enactment” in the title of Jermolaewa´s work refers to a practice in contemporary art that means “acting out a performance again, re-making it with all the sentiments and knowledge engendered by the initial event and the here and now. It differs from pure mimicry or quotation in that is often based on (collective and individual) memories and thus entails translation from one time to another, one narrative to another, one performer to another, and from one audience to another.”
Anna Jermolaewa (Russia – Austria)
Anna Jermolaewa was born in Saint Petersburg in 1970 and lives in Vienna. In recent years she has held solo exhibitions at Zachęta—National Gallery of Art, Warsaw (2015); Moscow House of Photography (2013); Kunsthaus Graz (2012); Salzburger Kunstverein (2012); ICA—Institute of Contemporary Art Sofia (2011) and Kunstverein Friedrichshafen (2009). Her works have been included in the following permanent collections: Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Friedrich Christian Flick Collection, Berlin; Kiasma—Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki; mumok—Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien, Vienna; Kontakt. The Art Collection of Erste Group and ERSTE Foundation, Vienna; Wien Museum, Vienna and Belvedere, Vienna. From 2005 to 2011, Anna Jermolaewa was professor for Media Art at the University of Arts and Design in Karlsruhe, Germany.
The Museum of the History of Photography
The Museum of the History of Photography was founded in St. Petersburg on 18 August, 2003. Its foundation was initiated by individuals as well as public institutions and its collection of photo equipment of the end of the 19th – 20th century is the biggest in Russia. The collection of the Museum was formed by several private collections covering different areas of interest. Among those the extensive collection of V.V.Platonov is worthy of special mention. Besides the two halls for permanent exhibition, the museum’s space includes rooms for temporary exhibitions, storage rooms and a library.
The museum visitors are invited to go for an excursion and attend master classes.