Lesley Johnstone, Volker Pantenburg and Susan Schuppli

Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal
144 pp col. throughout 10 x 7.5 in softcover
$29.95 Can. $29.95 U.S.
February 2017
Beirut, Sarajevo, Gaza, Kiev, Belgrade - these places are indelibly linked to war and conflict in the modern era. In the minds of most Westerners, they also exist in a hazy mix of fact and fiction. Between official government statements and unofficial reports of attacks, riots, uprisings and reprisals, reality on the ground is hard to determine. So, how can we know what we know? The question resonates through the work of filmmaker and artist, Emanuel Licha, who has spent the past 10 years exploring the front-line perspectives of both participants and journalists. Published to accompany a nationally traveling exhibition, this publication documents an installation version of Licha’s creative documentary Hotel Machine. Filmed in the hotels and safe-havens that house war correspondents, the film is presented in a central space surrounded by five adjacent archive stations, which through texts, images and other documents explore aspects of the concept of the “war hotel.” For Licha, the hotels represent “gaze shapers” that play a central role in the landscape of war and in his own work. The publication's title is from Kafka's In The Penal Colony. In English and French.

Emanuel Licha was born in Montréal in 1971. Recent solo exhibitions have been held at the SBC Gallery, Montréal; LOOP 09, Barcelona; Galerie Cortex Athletico, Bordeaux; Canadian Cultural Centre, Paris; Careof, Milan; Institute for Contemporary Art, Pristina; as well as at Ex Teresa Arte Actual, Mexico City. He is based in Paris and Berlin.

Lesley Johnstone is curator and Head of Exhibitions and Education at the Musée and has authored monographs on Valérie Blass, Lynne Marsh, Eve Sussman and Liz Magor. Volker Pantenburg is Professor of Film Studies at Freie Universität, Berlin and author of Farocki/Godard: Film as Theory (2015) and Cinematographic Objects: Things and Operations (2015). He is co-founder of the Harun Farocki Institut. Susan Schuppli is a U.K.-based artist and Senior Lecturer and Acting Director of the Centre for Research Architecture, Goldsmiths University of London.

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