Next Year in Jerusalem (Hommage to Rabbi Löw)
Single-channel (Umatic), 5:44 minutes
Cite Internationale des Arts, Paris
In the 16th century, Rabbi Loew is not only an extraordinary personality within the teachings of Kabbalah and Alchemy, but also a visionary of visual media and cybernetics. The image compositions in Bielicky's video work illustrate the world through the eyes of the Kabbalist. The flowing water symbolizes the constant movement of creation and transgression, but also the unstoppable flow of time.
Rabi Löw was not only an outstanding personality in Cabbala and Alchemy in 17th century Prague, but was also the harbinger of visual media and cybernetics. The pictures are aimed to illustrate the world of the cabbalist. The sound of running water symbolizes the process of movement of creation and transgression, but also of the passage of time.
In 1986 »Perpetuum Mobile« was one of Michael Bielicky’s first video works produced in Düsseldorf. Bielicky tried to reinvent his artistic practice along every major technical cornerstone, starting with Stop Motion, via U-Matic, Time base correction with DOC (Drop-out compensator) to GPS, the Internet and real time data and provoked and documented the aesthetic errors of the specter in the machine, in parallel and in contradiction to the on-going technical refinement process of the media industry.
In the 1980s he developed techniques to creatively misuse the first digital video editing machines to alter, distort and rearrange his video material, akin to his mentor Nam June Paik's debut exhibition in 1963, where Paik used magnets to distort his own television-set-based exhibits. Works like Four Seasons (1984), Circulus Viciosus (1985) and Paik-Hat (1986) are disturbing linear narrative traditions through cutting techniques and stop motion alone, whereas Perpetuum Mobile (1986), Next Year in Jerusalem (1988) and Golem is Alive (1989) introduce digital editing techniques to create videos, that appear to be haunted by the specters of early East European media culture. In 1989, the same year Golem is Alive is released, Michael Bielicky expands the two-dimensional screen into the exhibition space.