Antoni Muntadas (Barcelona, 1942) works around social, political and communication issues, the relationship between the public and the private space within a social framework, and investigates information channels and the way they are used to censor information or enact ideas.+
[…] I consider myself urban, I am someone who lives and works in cities, which have always been an element of echo and repercussion. Over time, this has led me to develop a series of works in which the city has been a point of reference, such as in the exhibition Muntadas Projects (1974-2004). +
Antoni Muntadas I
Video is Television?
HD video | Sound | Color | 75’ | 1989
In a collision of media images and images of the media media, Muntadas fuses films, video and television as a hall of mirrors that reflects contemporary culture. Seen in close-up fragments, television and video images from cinematic sources — Poltergeist, Videodrome, Network, The Candidate — and video art tapes are rendered as illegible, abstracted fields. Against this ground of scanlines and shadowy images, a series of isolated words — “manipulation,” “context,” “audience,” “fragment” — comprise an index of the tactics of the television apparatus, as well as Muntadas’ (video’s) reflexive strategies of critiquing the media. As Glenn Branca’s tense musical score accelerates to a climax, the final video image, which depicts television sets in a consumer display, fragments and disintegrates.
Text: EAI. Electronic Arts Intermix
On translation: Miedo/Jauf
HD video | Sound | Color | 54’ | 2007
On Translation: Miedo/Jauf is a project about the experience and interpretation of fear and its complexities on both sides of the Strait. On Translation: Miedo/Jauf is not a work about emigration / immigration from Africa / Europe. Neither about religion nor about terrorism. Two diverse realities divided not only by a sea but by border fences and limits on both sides.
The search for the north with its created paradises and for many not found, the fear as an emotion / sensation inserted in that decision of the crossing. The construction of the south as fiction / reality connected to phenomena of the unknown, the exotic and the different. Trying to understand and perceive a hope in a continent “forgotten” by the Western world, Africa as hope for the future.
Antoni Muntadas II
Alphaville e outros
HD video | Sound | Color | 9’ | 2011
“Alphaville,” a gated residential neighborhood in São Paulo, is the primary site of Muntadas’ Alphaville e outros which examines the phenomenon of “gated communities,” and how fear and a search for exclusivity lead to urban isolation and exclusion. The work takes as its reference the 1965 film Alphaville by Jean-Luc Godard (from which the name of the São Paulo neighborhood was derived), a dystopian sci-fi vision of a totalitarian, urban future. Scenes from Godard’s black-and-white film are juxtaposed with near-utopian promotions for the Brazilian “Alphaville,” digital animations, footage from security cameras, and images of the São Paulo neighborhood’s pools, tennis courts and gardens. Muntadas presents an architecture of space based on the rhetoric and mechanisms of fear and control; the recurring images of massive, running fences suggest the medieval defensive walls that once ringed cities.
Text: EAI. Electronic Arts Intermix
Açik Radyo (Myths & Stereotypes)
HD video | Sound | Color | 32’ | 2010
On Translation: Açik Radyo is part of Muntadas’ ongoing series of works and projects about communication, culture, and the role of art and the artist in contemporary life. This piece is the result of a two-year project created in the context of Lives and Works in Istanbul, a program that invites artists from European countries to work in—and create works about—the city. Açik Radyo is an alternative, independent radio station that broadcasts throughout the metropolitan area of Istanbul.
Writes Muntadas: “Açik Radyo is a translation filter and interface between me and the city of Istanbul. We talked with them and we interviewed them in order to create four radio programs aiming at questioning and interrogating the representation of Istanbul.”
Texto: EAI. Electronic Arts Intermix