Stabat Mater

Wordless hotel guests during the cold off-season, bizarre rock formations and sea cliffs, all accompanied by a story of great familial doom. The Stabat Mater or, "Sorrowful mother standing," relates directly to Josef Dabernig´s film of the same name that artistically interweaves apparently disparate elements. First, there is the seemingly clinical breakfast hall of an Apulian health spa populated by guests who neither speak nor otherwise communicate, caught like marionettes in their ever-repeating gestures. The sleek architecture plays its own part, casting a rigid net of fluted columns and other ornaments over the lethargically persevering group. Liveried waiters minimistically polish around on blank surfaces. The absurdist non-happening is underscored by an organ étude by Christoph Herndler, based on Schubert´s Stabat Mater.
Meanwhile, exteriors offer highly contoured views of virtually sculptural cliff formations constituting a huge natural bathing pool. Mournful sounds of the organ music time and again lap into vistas of the cloudy seascape, otherwise a narrative is heard that is told off-screen, about fateful events at a cattle ranch in Uruguay. Written by Bruno Pellandini it reports on a drought of many months that threatens the survival of a way of life, and the story ranges from the displacement of wondrous incidents to implying absolute catastrophe. Pellandini´s elliptically structured story shifts the interior/exterior dialectic of the film images into a curious limbo, indeed creating imaginary connections image and sound alone would not reveal. It can only be circuitously surmised, that however empty and distant the setting and its inhabitants seem - the pain, the misery is always closer than you think. (Christian Höller)

Translation: Eve Heller

Orig. Title
Stabat Mater
Year
2016
Country
Austria
Duration
16 min
Director
Josef Dabernig
Category
experimental
Orig. Language
german
Downloads
Stabat Mater (Image)
Stabat Mater (Image)
Stabat Mater (Image)
Credits
Director
Josef Dabernig
Script
Josef Dabernig
Cinematography
Christian Giesser
Music
Christoph Herndler
Editing
Josef Dabernig
Sound Design
Michael Palm
Text Author
Bruno Pellandini
Actor/Actress
Wolfgang Dabernig, Laurence Schulz, Gaetano Milone, Emma Gruber, Sabine Gruber, Immacolata Giuseppa Cozza, Josef Dabernig, Otto Dabernig, Isabella Hollauf, Markus Scherer, Kathrin Schulz
Speaker
Andreas Patton
Production
Josef Dabernig
Co-Producer
Kunsthalle Winterthur, Badischer Kunstverein Karlsruhe
Supported by
BKA - innovative film
Available Formats
DCP 2K flat (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,85
Sound Format
stereo
Frame Rate
24 fps
Color Format
b/w
Digital File (prores, h264)
35 mm (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,85
Sound Format
mono
Frame Rate
24 fps
Festivals (Selection)
2016
Viennale - Vienna Int. Film Festival
2017
Graz - Diagonale, Festival des österreichischen Films
Oberhausen - Int. Kurzfilmtage
Moscow Int. Experimental Film Festival
Jihlava - East Silver Market
Villach, Udine, Ljubljana - K3 Short Film Festival
2018
Seattle - Int. Film Festival
2019
Helsinki - metakino Architecture Film Festival