October 6, 2015

kyodai makes the big t ime

Filed under: 1992 - kyodai makes the big time — ABRAXAS @ 9:04 am

It’s very difficult for me to write about the film, about my vision for it. You know I was living in a little gypsey caravan behind Artis, on the Plantage Doklaan and I did not have electricity or running water. I would wake up very early in the morning with a handful of kwartjes and go to the public phone booth on the corner of Plantage Middenlaan to make all my production phone calls (there were no mobile phones in those days). Producing the film was a lot of work and so in a way the direction of it just kind of happened. We had done six months of rehearsals so the actors knew exactly what I wanted from each scene. I had had months of discussions with Joost van Gelder so he also knew exactly what I wanted from the image. The actual shooting went very smoothly although I found that big truck very disconcerting. A huge truck filled with lights and camera gear. Koos Vos and Janneque Draisma were really my vision for the film. I knew them from the nightlife, had seen them both a lot in clubs and cafes. I liked their visual presence, their style. So that was it really. Neither of them are anything like those characters in real life. But I was able to marry the look of them to the characters in the story. I think casting is very important. Casting makes or breaks the film. If you have the wrong actors, the wrong looking people, then nothing can make it work. But with the right people cast it all sort of works by itself. In later films I stopped doing rehearsals altogether and tried just shooting. That had a lot to do with video and digital video and being able to just shoot a lot of material. But I don’t think the films got better because of it, just that the process became easier and I became lazier. That’s probably why I love filming documentaries so much, I don’t have to think much in advance, it is more improvisational.

aryan kaganof

October 4, 2015

Dean Hutton as Queer Jesus

Filed under: art — ABRAXAS @ 12:34 pm


eyes without a face

Filed under: film as subversive art — ABRAXAS @ 12:24 pm

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Khoisan, robbed – now @klyntji

Filed under: kaganof short films — ABRAXAS @ 9:17 am


watch it here: http://klyntji.com/post/130389631428/khoisan-robbed-kaganof

October 3, 2015

Kaganof@Poetry Africa, Durban, 12-17 October

Filed under: kaganof — ABRAXAS @ 1:47 am


October 2, 2015

a letter to mike aldridge

Filed under: kaganof — ABRAXAS @ 1:29 pm

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Ulrike Meinhof – “from protest to resistance”

Filed under: politics — ABRAXAS @ 11:28 am

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Let it be established: it has been documented that you can’t simply shoot into a crowd here, that the protest by intellectuals against the mass stupefaction by the Springer media is serious, that it is not meant for the dear Lord and not for later, in order to be able to say at some point that you were always against it. It has been documented that common decency is a shackle that can be broken through if those wearing the shackles are beaten and shot at. It has been documented that there are still people in this country who do not merely condemn terror and violence and [who] are secretly opposed to it and sometimes take a risk and open their mouths and do not let themselves be frightened; and there are also people who are willing and able to resist so it can be understood that business cannot continue as usual. It has been shown that incitement to murder and murder disturb the public peace and order, that there is a public that will not accept that. That a human life has a different quality than windowpanes, Springer trucks, and demonstrators’ cars, which were overturned and damaged by police in absolutely arbitrary acts during the delivery blockade in front of the Springer tower. That there is a public determined not merely to call the intolerable intolerable, but to intervene to disarm Springer and his accomplices.

Now, after it has been shown that there are means other than just demonstrations, Springer hearings, and protest events, means other than those that have failed, because the attack on Rudi Dutschke could not be prevented; now that the shackles of common decency have been broken, the discussion on violence and counterviolence can and must be started anew. Counterviolence as it has been practiced during these Easter days is neither suitable to arouse sympathy, nor to draw startled liberals over to the side of the extra-parliamentary opposition (APO). Counterviolence risks turning into violence, where the brutality of the police determines the law of action, where superior rationality gives way to powerless rage, where paramilitary actions of the police are answered through paramilitary means. The Establishment, however, the “gentlemen at the top” – to use Rudi’s words – in the parties, governments, and associations have to comprehend that there is only one means by which to create lasting “peace and order,” namely, by expropriating Springer. The fun is over. “Protest is when I say I don’t like this and that. Resistance is when I see to it that things that I don’t like no longer occur.”

Source: Ulrike Marie Meinhof, “Vom Protest zum Widerstand” [“From Protest to Resistance”], konkret, no. 5 (May 1968), p. 5.

on the sound of the room

Filed under: kaganof — ABRAXAS @ 9:43 am

Composers don’t write their music for “Solo Piano and Room”. They compose for “Solo Piano”. The only room I want to hear in a recording is the room I’m in (and actually I don’t even want to hear that one!). The idea of playing for a room really repells me. I find it deeply repugnant. One must exclude the room altogether and only record the music. Anything else is nostalgia for a time before music became ontological. Sound recordings actualised music. Before sound recordings music was only an idea. Now it is a thing. And this thing is much more real than the idea. Plato was wrong. And perversely, Plato was right. Reality is the cave it’s true. But recordings drag us out of the cave and into the real, the ding an sich, of music. Live performance is a rehearsal for the reality of the recorded object. The meaning of music is always and only in its recorded manifestation. This ontology of sound overwhelms all other previously held approaches to playing music. The ears have it.

aryan kaganof

October 1, 2015

Aryan Kaganof Group Exhibitions

Filed under: kaganof — ABRAXAS @ 8:35 pm

July 2014 ICA Artists’ Film Biennial, London: Avant-Noir curated by Greg de Cuir. Song For Hector (5min)
June 2014 Joburg Fringe, Johannesburg Art Fair, curated by Niklas Zimmer
In The End (8min33sec)
June 2014 Photonic Moments Month of Photography, Ljubljana, Slovenia
The African Time Machine, curated by Silke Schmikl
Society of the Spectacle (3min36sec)
September 2013 Joburg Fringe, Johannesburg Art Fair, curated by Almut Determeyer
Society of the Spectacle (3min36sec)
September 2013 Incubate Festival, Tilburg, Netherlands
Society of the Spectacle (3min36sec)
May 2011 Agter die Berge, Berlin
Casbah and Back (8min)
March 2011 Impressions Gallery, Bradford, UK
Film As A Subversive Art, curated by Mark Goodall
Il strategio del ragno (6min)
March 2011 Gallery D21, Leipzig, Germany
Private Viewing: South African Video Art
Casbah and Back (7min33sec)
February 2011 The Amin Gulgee Gallery, Karachi, Pakistan
Imagining Cities, curated by SPARCK
Western 4.33 (33min)
May 2010 W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Reserach, Harvard University. IN/FLUX curated by SPARCK and LOWAVE
Western 4.33 (33min)
August 2008 NSA Gallery, Durban, curated by Brenton Maart
Three Highlights From The National Arts Festival
Taylor Rain is Dirty Girl in Velvet (11min)
September 2007 Sexpo Art Gallery, Gallagher Estate, Johannesburg
Venus In Furs (7min)
September 2007 Black Soil INternational Hiphop Film festival, The Hague
“Aryan Kaganof Retrospective”
September 2007 New Music Indaba, UNISA, Pretoria
Reverie (11min)
February 2006 Bak, Utrecht. Concerning War, curated by Danila Cahen
Western 4.33 (33min)
2003 NSA Gallery, Durban
The Staging of the Artist as the Work Itself
with Helge Janssen, Catherine Henegan, Nicola Deane

Aryan Kaganof Bio

Filed under: kaganof — ABRAXAS @ 8:31 pm

Born on 9 March 1964 in Johannesburg, Aryan Kaganof attended Durban High School where he matriculated in 1981, winning the English Prize. In 1983 he left South Africa to avoid military conscription into the apartheid army.

Having moved to The Netherlands he worked at the Dutch Anti-Apartheid Movement (AABN) (1983 to 1986) as a researcher/activist and also at the pirate radio stations Radio 100 and Radio X (1985 to 1989), where he made radio programmes about jazz music (Rhythm-a-ning) and South African exile music and politics (Vula). It was during this period that he wrote about music and culture for various international publications, including the ANC’s cultural magazine RIXAKA (Zambia), JAZZ TIMES (Poland), ZUIDELIJK AFRIKA NIEUWS (Netherlands), and the pop culture magazine VULA (South Africa).

In 1990 he enrolled in the Netherlands Film & Television Academy (NFTVA) where he studied feature film direction, script writing, editing and production, until graduating in 1994. While still a second year student he won the Dutch Oscar equivalent for Best Feature Film (the Golden Calf) for his first feature film, KYODAI MAKES THE BIG TIME, a self-produced 16mm production shot in 14 days during the holiday between the first and second academic year. He continued to shoot feature films during each vacation. In 1996 he pioneered the use of digital video as a feature film medium with the transfer to 35mm NAAR DE KLOTE! (Wasted!). Due to the film’s commercial success in Japan he was invited to direct the first Japanese film shot via such a process, TOKYO ELEGY, in 1999.

He returned to South Africa in 1999 in order to make acquaintance with his biological father. In March 2000 a retrospective of his films was held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco where he was also Artist in Residence. In 2001 his first solo fine art exhibition was held in Cape Town at the Association For Visual Arts (AVA). His second solo show was held at the NSA Gallery in Durban in 2003 where he was also Artist in Residence. His 2002 film WESTERN 4.33 was shot in Namibia and tells the story of the German concentration camps on Shark Island off the coast of Luderitz. The film was screened at the 2004 Berlinale and won awards for Best Video Made in Africa at the 12th Milan African Film Festival; Best Documentary Made in Africa at the Reunion Africa and Islands Film Festival. Between 2002 and 2006 he published a string of novels including USELESSLY (Jacana, South Africa) and Hectisch (Podium, Netherlands).

In 2005 he shot the world’s first feature film made on a mobile phone camera, SMS SUGAR MAN. As a result of the impact that the film made in Sweden he was invited to K3 Malmo University for a 6 month stint as Visiting Professor in Film & Digital New Media (2008). He has worked as an editor with many South African film directors in the past few years, including Akin Omotoso (JESUS AND THE GIANT, which he also scripted, and MAN ON GROUND) Eran Tahor (IMAGINE) and Craig Matthew (WELCOME NELSON, a documentary about the 20th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison, screeend by eTV in 2010. His most recent features as editor were ELELWANI (directed by Ntshaveni wa Luruli) and COLD HARBOUR (directed by Carey Mckenzie).

His on-going music research project the AFRICAN NOISE FOUNDATION performed as part of the Badilisha Poetry Festival at Spier in December 2009 in an incarnation featuring Zim Ngqawana, Mantombi Matotiyana and the Kalahari Surfer. In November 2010 he collaborated with Cape Town film maker Dylan Valley on THE UPRISING OF HANGBERG, a documentary exposing human rights violations in Hout Bay by the Metro police force. A retrospective film festival of his work, AK47, organised by DOMUS has been held in Stellenbosch. A full retrospective of his short films was held in 2014 at the Oberhausen International Short Film Festival. A retrospective of his features and documentaries was held at the Italian Academy at Columbia University in March 2014.

His long form documentary about the Eoan Group Book Project, AN INCONSOLABLE MEMORY, had its world premiere during the IDFA, November 2013. His most recent documentary, NIGHT IS COMING, about the Marikana massacre, was screened and discussed at Oxford University, Sheffield Hallam University and at the Athens AvantGarde Film Festival in October 2014.
Kaganof is a Fellow at STIAS, the Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study, where he was Artist In Residence for 6 months in 2012-13 during which time he made the short film STELLENBOSCHED. He will be Artist-In-Residence at STIAS again in July and August 2015, along with Athol Fugard and Zakes Mda.

Filed under: art,caelan — ABRAXAS @ 12:50 pm


ons klyntji – out now

Filed under: danila botha,kagapoems,stacy hardy — ABRAXAS @ 12:28 pm


Filed under: art,caelan — ABRAXAS @ 12:26 pm


Filed under: registered — ABRAXAS @ 12:23 pm


nagmusiek nominated for fiction and non-fiction prize!

Filed under: stephanus muller — ABRAXAS @ 12:18 pm


first published here: http://www.pressreader.com/south-africa/volksblad/20150930/281762743068032/TextView

stephanus muller’s nagmusiek hooks the prize nominations in

Filed under: stephanus muller — ABRAXAS @ 12:12 pm

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first published here: http://www.netwerk24.com/vermaak/2015-09-30-stephanus-muller-se-nagmusiek-hark-benoemings-in

September 30, 2015

james sey on night is coming – a threnody for the victims of marikana

Filed under: 2014 - Marikana Symphony — ABRAXAS @ 10:21 pm

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first published here: https://theconversation.com/marikana-artwork-provides-a-tool-for-conscientisation-46375

daniel-ben pienaar and his mother, hermanus, 2013

Filed under: kagaportraits — ABRAXAS @ 9:55 pm


found footage magazine #1

Filed under: film as subversive art — ABRAXAS @ 9:46 pm

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order it here: http://foundfootagemagazine.com/issues/

truth in black and white

Filed under: politics — ABRAXAS @ 7:27 pm

September 29, 2015

zimasa mpemnyama on decolon i sing wits

Filed under: 2015 - Decolonising WITS — ABRAXAS @ 2:37 pm

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first published here: https://zimasampemnyama.wordpress.com/2015/09/28/pamberi-ne-chimurenga-forward-with-the-revolution/

society of the spectacle now online in english version

Guy Debord (1931-­1994) was the most influential figure in the
Situationist International, the notorious subversive group that played
a key role in provoking the May 1968 revolt in France. “The Society of
the Spectacle” (1973, 90 minutes) is Debord’s film adaptation of his
own 1967 book of the same name. As passages from the book are read
in voiceover the text is illuminated, via direct illustration or various
types of ironic contrast, by clips from Russian and Hollywood features
(“Potemkin,” “Ten Days That Shook the World,” “For Whom the Bell Tolls,”
“Shanghai Gesture,” “Johnny Guitar,” “Mr. Arkadin,” etc.), TV commercials,
softcore porn, and news and documentary footage, including glimpses of
Spain 1936, Hungary ’56, Watts ’65, France ’68, and other revolts of the
past. Inter-title quotes from Marx, Machiavelli, Clausewitz, Tocqueville,
and Debord himself occasionally break the flow, challenging the viewers
to question their own relation to the film — and to the society as a whole.

San Francisco filmmaker Konrad Steiner has produced a dubbed version
of this film using Ken Knabb’s English translation as read by artist/scholar
Dore Bowen. Konrad also located and reinserted the original English-language
clips from the many quoted films (which in Debord’s film were mostly dubbed
in French). This enables English-speaking viewers to pay full attention to
the images instead of trying to follow subtitles, and thus better perceive the
complex interplay between montage, image, and language through which
Debord presents his theses.

This excellent dubbed version is now online at https://vimeo.com/139772287

(English overdub) The Society of the Spectacle (Final sound edit) from konrad steiner on Vimeo.

For more information on Debord’s films, see http://www.bopsecrets.org/SI/debord.films/index.htm

theodoor steen reviews venom and eternity for dummies


first published here: http://www.salonindien.nl/2015/van-kerkhof-naar-kaganof-isous-venom-and-eternity-en-kaganofs-kyodai/3/

VENOM AND ETERNITY FOR DUMMIES from African Noise Foundation on Vimeo.

baudrillard on cinema and reality

Filed under: film,film as subversive art,philosophy — ABRAXAS @ 8:49 am

The virtuality of war is not, then, a metaphor. It is the literal passage from reality into fiction, or rather the immediate metamorphosis of the real into fiction. The real is now merely the asymptotic horizon of the virtual.

And it isn’t just the reality of the real that’s at issue in all this, but the reality of cinema. It’s a little like Disneyland: the theme parks are now merely an alibi – masking the fact that the whole context of life has been disneyfied.

It’s the same with the cinema: the films produced today are merely the visible allegory of the cinematic form that has taken over everything – social and political life, the landscape, ware, etc. – the form of life totally scripted for the screen. This is no doubt why cinema is disappearing: because it has passed into reality. Reality is disappearing at the hands of the cinema and cinema is disappearing at the hands of reality. A lethal transfusion in which each loses its specificity.

If we view history as a film – which it has become in spite of us – then the truth of information consists in the post-synchronization, dubbing and sub-titling of the film of history.

Jean Baudrillard
The Intelligence of Evil

September 28, 2015

theodoor steen reviews kyodai makes the big time

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Kyodai Makes The Big Time from African Noise Foundation on Vimeo.

first published here: http://www.salonindien.nl/2015/van-kerkhof-naar-kaganof-isous-venom-and-eternity-en-kaganofs-kyodai/

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