Soft Turns / Sarah Jane Gorlitz and Wojciech Olejnik
Behind the High Grass
stop-motion animation, 2011, 7:48
01.02. - 24.03.13
Soft Turns is the collaborative effort of artists Sarah Jane Gorlitz and Wojciech Olejnik. Currently based in Toronto, Canada they have been collaborating on video installation and stop-motion animation since 2006. The idea of an encounter with something, as an ever-changing space between the foreign and the familiar, the accessible and inaccessible, is a central theme of their practice.
Behind the High Grass is a project based on a travel book we once found by chance at a flea market in Berlin. When the artists rediscovered it in their image bank files six months later, all the text had been torn out, leaving only the sepia toned images and color plates, with an occasional, vague caption in German. From the images they could infer that the book featured two European travelers in South America, during the post-war era, and the artists initial interest was fueled by the often odd and exotic aspects of the photographs. Later they discovered that the book was titled Südamerika. Zwischen Parana und Rio de la Plata (1956 German edition), and was co-authored by two Czech travelers: Jiří Hanzelka and Miroslav Zikmund. As they slowly familiarized themselves with the travelers lives, excursion, and research the story of the book became inexhaustible with content. Sarah Jane Gorlitz and Wojciech Olejnik became keen listeners, spectators, jotting notes, logging information, indeed, they themselves became travelers, within a deep forest of what was in the book, what it referenced and what it did not.