Rosa coeli

The film begins abruptly: the first image is a medium-range shot of a man. He is sitting in a train, reading. Then we see a close-up of the man. A first-person narrator says from off-camera: "We convince ourselves that we need it: a memory of childhood." Sounding over everything is a drone, it makes abstract the sounds of a train ride and at the same time opens up a space beyond that which is visible. Acoustically, Josef Dabernig´s Rosa coeli leads us into a cave or a pipe - the chasm of memory, the dark abyss of forgetting. The man returns to the site of his childhood, a Moravian village. His father has died, which is the occasion for his journey. This sets off a whirl of associations; about returning, about the family. It draws childhood stories to the surface and a short time later, the child has grown too old to lose himself in the merry-go-round´s pleasurable spin, an effect similar to that of slivovitz. The narrative is caught in a slip-stream, in a frenzy of memory. As though through a medium, deeper and deeper levels of the past are brought forth by the off-camera voice, from a time long before the main character´s own story.
The images, on the contrary, move on the surface, around the factual nature of the phenomena: the gaze remains fixed on potted plants or on the actors´ signature on a few pieces of paper. When the camera focuses into the depths of the room, or films through a window, we see nothing - nothing behind, nothing out in front: nothing special. The gaze is aimless, what it shows us is unforeseeable: A succession of plain interiors in the styles of the 1950s and 1960s; views of a small industrial town in the fog and cold. Time has frozen. The man sits and waits, waiting to leave.

(Sylvia Szely)

Translation: Lisa Rosenblatt


We experience Josef Dabernig inter alia in Rosa Coeli as a taxi driver in a remote small town with modernist high-rises, accompanying a man returning home. The traveler has made the trip because his father has died; he is staying in a slightly dilapidated hotel with markedly right-angled traits, and dubious decor and entertainment options, and, of course, he has papers to sign.

(Matthias Michalka)


A man. off-screen, recalls his childhood in the Moravian village he is returning to in order to bury his father. His family´s history mirrors the turbulent past of the Central European community over the centuries. There´s talk of war and migration, people and landscapes, the destruction of Rosa coeli convent and the beneficial effects of wine.

(Catalog of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Krakow)


--> ROSA COELI

Orig. Title
Rosa coeli
Year
2003
Country
Austria
Duration
24 min
Director
Josef Dabernig
Category
Essay
Orig. Language
german
Subtitles
english
Downloads
Rosa coeli (Image)
Rosa coeli (Image)
Rosa coeli (Image)
Credits
Director
Josef Dabernig
Cinematography
Christian Giesser
Editing
Josef Dabernig
Sound Design
Michael Palm
Text Author
Bruno Pellandini
Actor/Actress
Kurt Fellinger, Wolfgang Dabernig, Josef Dabernig, Thomas Schmid
Speaker
Branko Samarovski
Production
Josef Dabernig
Supported by
BKA. Kunst, ORF, Wien Kultur
Available Formats
35 mm (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,37
Sound Format
Dolby stereo
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
b/w
DCP 2K flat (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,33
Sound Format
stereo
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
b/w
Digital File (prores, h264)
Festivals (Selection)
2003
Viennale - Vienna Int. Film Festival
2004
Graz - Diagonale, Festival des Österreichischen Films
Cork - Int. Film Festival
Plzen - Festival of Czech Films
2005
Istanbul - Int. Short Film Festival
Stuttgart - Filmwinter, Expanded Media Festival
Graz - artimage biennial on architecture and media