Two Times 4’33”

On Paper II M. de BoerTwo Times 4’33”


Artist’s book in association with Two Times 4’33” 2008 a film by Manon de Boer, published as part of On Paper a special collaborative project between 5th Berlin Biennial of contemporary art 2008 and A Prior Magazine.

In collaboration with the 5th berlin biennial for contemporary art, A Prior Magazine has developed a two-fold project entitled On Paper.

‘Zuhandenheit’ [ready-to-hand]—a Heideggerian term used to explore the meaning and functionality of objects in relation toman/human beings—is activated throughout On Paper by making readable objects available to the visitors of the biennale; and by creating a tangible echo of the biennale works on paper. This ‘Zuhandenheit’ is not only grounded in the form of the project, but also in the content of the first part of On Paper: A Prior #17 (David Maljkovic, Daniel Knorr, Kristina Norman).

The second part of On Paper consists of six separate publications and limited editions conceived by Ahmet Öğüt , Kristina Norman, Manon de Boer, Susanne Kriemann, Cezary Bodzianowski and Paulina Olowska. Each of these editions forms a unique ‘object’ that, as paper, is tied to the dematerialized realm of conceptual art, but that also cannot be thought of outside its object status. As such they may be the quintessential ‘things that cast no shadow’, thus sounding a tangible echo of certain works at the biennial.

Manon de Boer
* 1966 in Kodaicanal (in), lives and works in Brussels (be)

Two Times 4'33"
2007/2008, 35mm film transferred to HD, 10 min, color, sound (Dolby Surround®)

"With great subtlety and thought, the filmic art of Manon de Boer repeatedly places viewers at the fault line between sound and image. The slow editing of her analog film, combined with a poignant, often detached soundtrack, reflects her consistent attention to the present day resonance of the postwar avant-garde. Inspired by Chris Marker and Marguerite Duras, particularly the latter’s experimentation with voice-over and tone, de Boer repeatedly focuses on unsynchronized soundtracks and other complex sound relations in her filmic portraits of individuals. For Two Times 4’33’’ (2008) de Boer staged and filmed two concerts of John Cage’s notoriously silent music composition in three movements, 4’33’’ (1952). The first half of the two-part 35mm film captures the “natural” sound and image of the performance with a camera fixed on avant-garde pianist Jean-Luc Fafchamps. The acoustics mimetically entrance the viewer throughout: the sound of the pianist entering, marking the “dead” periods with a chess watch, and being applauded upon termination. In the second half of the film, the contextual soundtrack is left out, a fact felt all the more poignantly as the camera gently pans toward the concert audience and onto a windy outdoor scene heard previously in the first version of the performance. The dead silence is interrupted only by the clicks of a watch; the mute second half of de Boer’s film seemingly excludes the screening room public from Cage’s “music.” Or perhaps the concert only begins the moment the intimate (bodily) presence and ambient sound in the film’s black box converts its public into the “performance”? Whatever the case, confronting the viewer with an aurally numb visual flow contests the sensation of a motion picture divorced from sound and calls into question the very nature of the cinematic sound-image hierarchy." (from 5th Berlin Biennial)

Experimental Music
John Cage, 1957 (extract)

Notes on silence by the pianist and some people from the audience of _Two Times 4’33”

Jean-Luc Fafchamps
Sirah Foighel-Brutman
Simon Mayer
Chysa Parkinson
Marisa Cab
Gilles Pollet
Tassos Karahlios
Georgia Vardarou
Mette Edvardsen
Agni Papadelh Rossetou
Tuur Marinus
Liz Kinoshita

Notes on Silence and Cinema
Manon de Boer