A to A

This film centers on a very special form of street construction, in a very literal sense. A type of space ship of concrete, an underpass created below a rotunda, is the silent backdrop that serves as the nighttime entry into the film. The futuristic construction is traveled for 22 seconds before the title of the work – A to A (Kreis Wr.Neustadt) – appears and thus begins the rattle of the motor that accompanies the rest of the film: from his Vespa, Johann Lurf documents around 100 rotunda islands in Lower Austria, shown in increasingly grotesque segments of only a few seconds – and thus creates something of a catalogue of local building malfunctions. The center islands that he shows feature gravel, decorative hedges, or stone sculptures with grapevines, fountains, or ornamental flower bulbs, and are furnished with traffic signs, information postings, or advertisement objects.

A to A is thereby not only a study of the islands themselves, but above all, of the terror of the mundane, of everyday architectural horrors, which one can count on seeing in the field of traffic islands. The industrial areas of eastern Austria are disfigured by electrical poles, building cranes, and suburban residential blocks appear exchangeable and all of the discount furniture stores, gas stations and junk-food restaurants, the supermarkets and building supply stores seem like the unchanging set of a ghostly provincial staging. The monotony of the rotunda suggests here a commentary on the emptiness of Austrian real-scenery, punctuated only by the piping of the Vespa, which produces diverse whining, high-pitched motor sounds through the changing of gears, as if even the vehicle itself was lamenting the views that it is exposed to. The 3-D version, which provides an alternative way to admire A to A, incidentally also gives even more plastic impressions of Austrian architectural pragmatism.

(Stefan Grissemann)

Translation: Charlotte Eckler


Johann Lurf’s film Kreis Wr. Neustadt / A to A is an immersive document of numerous rotunda islands in Lower Austria. Built to control the speed and flow of traffic, the rotunda makes for a clearing in the built environment. Its center is functionless by default, but as its presence in space is inevitable, it offers itself as an island of representation. Circling these islands on his Vespa, Lurf catalogues the absurd symbolisms that emerge from them.

(Philip Widmann, Processing Landscape, Tourprogram Japan 2016)


There are all sorts of roundabouts. From simple decortive lawns to monumental sculptures. The camera looks on the ill-logic of urban filler architecture. Over 100 roundabouts are observed, inspected, and filmed, to compile an absurd catalogue that shows the grotesque existence of the horror of Austrian street bareness. Johann Lurf, artist and filmmaker who won the Premio Aprile with Vertigo Rush, is back in competition with a new eccentric and experimental work, conceived and filmed on a Vespa through little towns in the South of Austria.

(Milano Film Festival 2012)


From his very audible Vespa, Johann Lurf documents around 100 roundabouts in Lower Austria, creating a catalogue of the bizarre landscaping and banal architecture of these traffic islands and the roadside environments in which they exist.

(Images Festival Toronto)

Orig. Title
Kreis Wr.Neustadt
Year
2011
Country
Austria
Duration
5 min
Director
Johann Lurf
Category
Avantgarde/Arts
Orig. Language
no dialogue
Downloads
A to A (Image)
A to A (Image)
Credits
Director
Johann Lurf
Concept & Realization
Johann Lurf
Cinematography
Mark Gerstorfer
Editing
Johann Lurf
Sound
Nils Kirchhoff
Colour Correction
Andi Winter
Production
Mark Gerstorfer, Johann Lurf
Driver
Peter Jaitz
Supported by
Wien Kultur
Available Formats
Digital File (prores, h264) (Distribution Copy)
35 mm (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,66
Sound Format
stereo
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
colour
DCP 2k 3D (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,66
Sound Format
stereo
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
colour
DCP 2K flat (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
1:1,66
Sound Format
stereo
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
colour
Festivals (Selection)
2011
Viennale - Vienna Int. Film Festival ("Mehrwert" Short Film Award)
2012
Osnabrück - EMAF - European Media Art Festival
Graz - Diagonale, Festival des österreichischen Films
Rotterdam - Int. Filmfestival
Bradford - International Film Festival
Toronto - IMAGES - Independent Film & Video Festival
Wien - VIS Vienna Independent Shorts
Marseille - FIDMarseille International Film Festival
Windsor - Media City
Seattle - Int. Film Festival
Zagreb - 25fps Film & Video Festival
Duisburg - Duisburger Filmwoche
Milano International Film Festival
Neubrandenburg (D) & Szczecin (PL) - dokumentART Film & Video Festival
Victoria - Antimatter Underground Film Festival
München - UnderDox, Festival für Dokument und Experiment
Rio de Janeiro - Mostra Curta de Cinema
Kassel - Dokumentarfilm- & Videofest
Wiesbaden - exground on screen
Villach, Udine, Ljubljana - K3 Short Film Festival
Denver - Int. Film Festival
Lima - Peru Int. Short Film Festival
2013
Paris - L'Etrange Festival
Wroclaw - WRO-International Media Art Biennale
Washington - National Gallery of Arts shows "Sixpack: The Austrian Experiment"
Rotterdam Architecture Film Festival
Stuttgart - Filmwinter, Expanded Media Festival (Norman 2013 -Jury Main Award)
2014
Basel - Bildrausch Film Festival
2019
Helsinki - metakino Architecture Film Festival