A film by Michal Kosakowski

‘Do You Have Murder Fantasies?’ – Exhibition at Kunstpalais Erlangen

Michal Kosakowski‘s work as a film-maker and artist is characterised by a preoccupation with media-related depictions of violence.

The Installation ‘Do You Have Murder Fantasies?’ is positioned in the wide and uncharted territories between fantasy and reality, and opens up both fronts simultaneously for its visitors:

A split-screen projection displays 49 short films. From 1996 onward, Michal Kosakowski interrogated people with widely different backgrounds about their murder fantasies and proposed to turn them into short films. His one condition was that the interviewees had to act out their respective fantasies themselves. More than a decade later, Kosakowski reunited with the participants and asked them the following questions, which are displayed on the installation’s 10 flat screens:

– Do you have murder fantasies?
– If someone murdered a person you love, how would you feel about it?
– Should torture be legalized?
– How would you define good and evil?
– Are soldiers murderers?
– Do you believe in God?
– Are you for or against the death penalty?
– What causes rampages?
– How do you see the relation between media and violence?
– What are the causes for violence?

The question ‘Do You Have Murder Fantasies?’ has been central to Michal Kosakowski’s artistic output since 1996:
Back in 1997 he successfully applied at Oliviero Toscani‘s Fabrica with a first concept for the ‘Fortynine’ project, which was eventually brought to fruition in 2007 in the context of the ‘Ortstermine’ projects presented by Lothringer 13 Städtische Kunsthalle München and in which a 5 ton walk-in mirror cube confronted visitors with murder fantasies, reflected in infinity.

A decade later, the idea of realising a trailer for the 49 short films led to a reunion with his former collaborators who were subjected to the above-mentioned interviews. What had piqued Kosakowski’s interest was the way in which his performers would deal with real violence as juxtaposed with their own previous murder fantasies. The participants‘ astonishing openness in the 50 hours of material filmed was impressive and contradictory enough to inspire Michal Kosakowski to turn them, combined with the 49 short movies, into his first feature film, ‘Zero Killed’.

Exhibition ‘Killing’ until June 17th, 2012 – Kunstpalais Erlangen, Germany

All photos © copyright by Erich Malter

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