Linda Bilda, Ausstellungsansicht, Photo: Pez Hejduk
One of the central themes of Linda Bilda's work is the production of (counter)
public spheres. The artist pursues this interest in her (comic) drawings, which
are published in newspapers and specialized magazines, forcefully setting the
scene with social-critical text production, as well as through her membership
in the editorial collective of the feminist art magazine "Die weisse Blatt"
or as the founder of the now legendary "Artclub Wien".
What links Linda Bilda with the Austrian avant-garde filmmaker Ernst Schmidt jr.
(1938-1988) is an interest in collective working processes to promote non-hierarchical
images of society and the development of text-image relationships that separate
visual and verbal material from conventional textures and compose new sequences.
This intensive occupation with Schmidt jr.'s artistic stance and an interest in
presenting his film-historical and theoretical work as well as largely unpublished
manuscripts and concepts to the public form the basis for the exhibition Linda
Bilda for Ernst Schmidt jr. in the Galerie of the Secession. The exhibition Linda
Bilda for Ernst Schmidt jr. is not intended to be a retrospective of the filmmaker,
who died in 1988, but rather the archive material that Linda Bilda has researched
highlights certain points of Schmidt jr.'s remarkable work, simultaneously reinserting
it into current art and media discourses on the basis of selected thematic fields.
The information consisting of correspondence, posters, film frames, concepts and
photos, which are transferred to the walls of the gallery using various techniques
(including photo emulsion, frottage), is organized around the fields of the economy
of (avant-garde) film and of filmmaking, music, the crossover of film and fine
arts, success and failure, history versus subhistory (the preservation and the
disappearance of information), and collective artistic working methods. An Expanded
Cinema installation, the premiere of a temporary exhibition concept and the inclusion
of positions of contemporary video artists (such as Terese Schulmeister or Anna
Kowalska, Mikki Muhr and Ulrike Müller) integrate Schmidt jr.'s endeavors
to think of filmic space and the promotion of a film culture in an expanded context.
Ernst Schmidt jr. was an independent filmmaker and film historian in one, and
one of the central figures of the Austrian avant-garde film scene of the 70s.
His film work includes experimental documentary films (including films on Viennese
Actionism), films reflecting on the material or the cinema itself, Expanded Cinema
actions, concept films intervening in social mechanisms, a narrative feature film
and animated film.
"The medium itself is primarily the filmmaker's theme. The mutability of
the medium, whether in detail or as a whole, first enables new information. At
the same time, free information means information that deviates from conventional
norms. No film should be the same as another. The filmmaker constantly has new,
mutable and expandable possibilities at his disposal. Yet Ernst Schmidt jr. had
no fixed concept of film. For him, film is a medium of investigation and discussion,
not only of oneself, but also of one's own context, music, fine arts and literature,
and problems of social reality. His entire filmic work is a single transgression
of the norms of film language, the techniques and the genre, thus playing with
and constantly questioning the values and norms of the avant-garde as well."
(Ernst Schmidt jr. on Ernst Schmidt jr.)
Ernst Schmidt jr. formulated this intermedia and uncompromising perspective of
film culture very early as the co-author (together with Hans Scheugl) of the publication
"Eine Subgeschichte des Films. Lexikon des Avantgarde-, Experimental- und
Undergroundfilms" (1974) and numerous other published articles /texts.
An extensive book, conceived and
compiled by Linda Bilda, will be published in conjunction with the exhibition,
which includes a re-publication of central film-historical and theoretical texts
by Ernst Schmidt jr. and a detailed film documentation of his work.
Linda Bilda, Secession (Ed.): Drehen Sie Filme, aber keine Filme!, Triton Verlag,
"Drehen Sie Filme, keine Filme"
285 pages, 5 colored illustrations, 78 b/w illustrations
authors: Ernst Schmidt jr., Linda Bilda, Matthias Herrmann
Secession/Triton Verlag 2001, ISBN 3-85486-100-1
Available in the
Parallel to the exhibition, there will be a showing the films of Ernst Schmidt
jr. at Schikaneder Kino.
Linda Bilda, born 1963, lives and works in Vienna.
For further information and photographic material please contact:
Secession, Association of Visual Artists Vienna Secession
Friedrichstraße 12, 1010 Vienna
Tel: +43-1-5875307-21, Fax: +43-1-5875307-34