Atelier

Hans Schabus has already put his studio through a great deal, for example the installation of a sizable model railroad just under the ceiling (Passagier // 2000) and a five-meter hole in the floor he dug himself (Schacht von Babel // 2003). Atelier covers the artist’s work space with another — filmic — room. The durations and sizes of shots, sequence of scenes and camera movements in this nine-minute work meticulously reconstruct the finale of Sam Peckinpah’s western The Wild Bunch (1969), and it also employs the other film’s soundtrack: Scenes of an almost empty street in Vienna are accompanied by jingling spurs and Mexican folk music. After just a few shots we are in the studio, which provides a view from the building’s roof, and the legendary over-the-top shooting begins. While the hail of bullets is not shown, the staccato editing with which Peckinpah staged his bandits’ end tears up the functionally designed studio: A swivel chair, two dark-green doors to a toilet, a full shelf, and so on remain unrelated spatial particles, and the cuts jump effortlessly between indoors and out. The absent film employed as a model prevents comprehension, as it applies its own system of coordinates to the space being filmed: Recurring shots from beneath chairs imply that someone’s hiding from something, movement on the part of the figures is suggested by the camera’s position, and random locations turn into centers of invisible action. At the conclusion: The massacre’s untouched location is shown in a long shot. Linking a late example of a western and an artist’s studio is equally melancholy and enigmatic: Was this the celebration of a withdrawn artist-as-subject’s last stand? Or was the studio honored as a scene of creative destruction? In any case, it represents a brilliant feat of cinematographic cross-mapping. (Joachim Schätz)
Translation: Steve Wilder

Orig. Title
Atelier
Year
2010
Country
Austria
Duration
9 min 28 sec
Director
Hans Schabus
Category
experimental
Orig. Language
not specified
Downloads
Atelier (Image)
Atelier (Image)
Atelier (Image)
Credits
Director
Hans Schabus
Cinematography
Robert Schabus
Sound
"Wild Bunch" - Sam Peckinpah
Editing
Robert Schabus
Colour Correction
Mischief Filmproduktion, Klaus Pamminger
Assistant
Gerald Freimuth, Margit Emesz
Available Formats
Digital File (prores, h264) (Distribution Copy)
Aspect Ratio
16:9
Sound Format
stereo
Frame Rate
25 fps
Color Format
colour
Festivals (Selection)
2011
Graz - Diagonale, Festival des Österreichischen Films
Kassel - Dokumentarfilm- & Videofest
2012
Dresden - Filmfest