Anja Kirschner, 2022


Based on Anja Kirschner’s extensive research into immersive gaming, UNICA deals with the resonance of past and present violence in post-apocalyptic computer game worlds. Merging motion capture with drawing and quasi-archeological procedures, UNICA manifests as a complex and poetic exploration of computational and non-computational technologies and the syncretic worlds that emerge from them.

The latent presence of an unnamed catastrophe that echoes throughout UNICA is repeatedly evoked by the film’s characters via overlapping references to computer games, drawings, and dreams. This deliberate indeterminacy intermingles with the origin story of Teufelsberg, where parts of the film were shot. In UNICA, the landscape park on the outskirts of Berlin, created from rubble of the Second World War, becomes a leitmotif for the subliminal presence of historical violences and their artificial naturalization.

Kirschner’s filmic approach is derived from the drawings and writings of the artist Unica Zürn (1916–1970), in particular her illustrated text Das Haus der Krankheiten (The House of Illnesses, 1958). In anagrams and fantastical representations of the body, Zürn provoked a rift with the normative anatomical, architectural, and linguistic structures she found herself subjected to. Kirschner transfers Zürn’s generative approach to digital forms of production and historical filming locations, weaving them into a profoundly topical examination of UNICA’s sites.

Register (FL//070)

Anja Kirschner
2 channel video installation, color video, stereo audio
3840px x 2160px, 34'54"