Danube traces, digital wideness and other things
Three girls roll into the scene on scooters. The setting for their performance is Donau City, a new district in Vienna where ultra-modern glass buildings of reinforced concrete have been shooting up since the end of the 1990s. The performers on this public "stage" interact with props originating both spatially and temporally from a very different location on the Danube, namely a Medieval port where wooden posts, millstones, a sword and coins were found – remnants from the State Gallery construction site at Krems. In Danube traces, digital wideness and other things, these items reappear in the form of castings used by the performers to both literally and figuratively trace circles: the long, flexible rods Dertnig most recently employed for her sculptures are very well suited – not only for her "clinking clothing" – but also to sketch giant circles on the pavement.
Their marks upon the so-called "Danube Flats" belong to traces drawn over the course of an improvised yet apparently harmonious choreography: "We move in succession, you go slow and I go fast. ride on the left, you ride on the right. Still we share the same path," according to the highly lyrical text accompanying the images and spoken form the very beginning.The friendship of these Digital Natives is invoked, friends for whom the dance steps of Yvonne Rainer or the quoted directives of John Cage are no more bewildering than their own playful interactions with a grindstone. At some point one of the girls "wears" a horse head: The association of her point-blank interaction with the object to Franz West’s Adaptives is just as unavoidable as Carola Dertnig's reference to Joan Jonas with her "horsehead" or sword. Dertnig also challenges the viewer, by combining fairy tale and contemporary art, archeology and performative knowledge, and moving bodies on static architecture – plus her digital recording of an improvised presentation.
Translation: Eve Heller
Donauspuren, digitale Weite und andere Dinge
5 min 30 sec