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Australasian premier of Swiss film and exhibition

Media Release

Australasian premier of Swiss film and exhibition

A special film and audio-visual exhibition addressing the fate of the world is coming to New Zealand direct from this year’s prestigious 49th Venice Biennale, for its only Australasian showing.

The exhibition by Swiss artists COM & COM has just closed at the world’s leading and biennial contemporary art festival in Venice and opens at New Zealand’s contemporary Govett-Brewster Art Gallery in New Plymouth on 17 November and closes on 28 January.

The Swiss cultural funding agency Pro-Helvetia has supported the show titled C-files: Tell Saga, by Swiss artists Marcus Gossolt and Johannus M. Hedinger who go by their syndicate name of COM & COM (Commercial Communication) which they founded in 1997.

C-files: Tell Saga involves a film, photographic film stills, sound, a series of videos, posters and other material.

In this work Gossolt and Hedinger present themselves both as the stars and as the protagonists in the film, members of the SBI (Swiss Bureau of Investigation) who are investigating a series of mysterious murders and kidnappings involving extraterrestrials. The film, which also stars Academy Award winner H R Giger, has the artists time traveling between the cinematic worlds of William Tell and The X Files.

The artists will travel to New Zealand to install the exhibition and on the 9th of December they will give a special lecture at the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery.

Greg Burke, Curator of New Zealand’s first exhibition, bi-polar, at the Venice Biennale and Director of the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, organized the presentation of the exhibition and film in New Zealand.

He says the Swiss film and photo installation reflects a strong vein of international contemporary art in its use of dynamic cinematic and audiovisual components as well as new media and computer related effects.

“It explores ways cinema cues an audience into a story. By using standard cinematic effects including those of science fiction film, C-Files: Tell Saga holds the audience in a state of suspense and thereby compels us to watch and to believe,” says Mr Burke.

“The work also examines the ways in which expectations of narrative generated through cinema are now common to a range of media including advertising, television, MTV and the internet.”

The show is presented in association with the summer exhibition at the Govett-Brewster, Feature: art, life and cinema, which explores the impact of cinema on recent contemporary art.

Together with this exhibition, C-files: Tell Saga explores the power of cinematic cliches. Gossolt and Hedinger finally succeed in saving the earth from colonization by extra-terrestrials. However, Evil survives… the truth is out there at the Govett-Brewster.

For further information contact:

Greg Burke, Director
06 758 5149


Miriam Jardine, Business Development Manager
06 759 0852

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