'Women and Men with a Mobile Camera' was an experimental workshop concluded with a collective artwork and a performance. It took place between May 16-26, 2012 within the Month of Photography in Krakow. Since the workshop was a result of a collaboration with the National Museum in Krakow, where at the time of the Festival an exhibition of A. Rodchenko's works was presented, we decided to draw an inspiration from constructivists and their methods of working with surrounding reality. This workshop can also be seen as a test of Vertov's methodology after almost 100 years of technological and cinematographic progress. In the media-obsessed era where everyone possesses her/his own video database, how boring and pointless or perhaps how healing, exciting and stimulating could the process of revisiting Vertov's workshop be?
The workshop participants were 8 systematically working young women and several occasional participants joining the process at random points. The first phase of the event aimed at collecting video clips characterising diverse facets of urban milieu. Participants were advised to work within 4 time periods, 20-24, 16-20, 12-16, 8-12, distributed across 4 days. After agreeing on subjects and themes to be captured and depending on site-specific activities taking place such as students festival, gay parade or religious ceremonies, specific neighbourhoods have been spotted and assigned to aforementioned time-brackets. Although in many cases, the specified site turned out to be just a starting point for an open psychogeographical wandering in search of the local. Collected material was downloaded back in the headquarters of the workshop - Bunkier Sztuki, a modern art gallery serving as the main venue for the entire Photography Festival. After categorising and evaluating the collected material we stepped into the second phase, a collective montage. During next 4 days, everyone visiting the site of the Photomonth was welcomed to intervene in the montage process which was open to the public. Four tutors, each responsible for one of the four time-zones, went through an enormously rich database of video clips to collectively craft four 8 minute long chapters constituting the movie eventually named 'Women and Men with a Mobile Camera'. The movie was officially presented on the 26th of May. The well attended premiere, was accompanied by the real time improvisation performed by experimental musicians from Krakow. The music is now merged with the video,serving as its integral part.
WOMEN AND MEN WITH A MOBILE CAMERA ConCritLab Vimeo.
Further description: The movie is a result of workshops held within the Month of Photography in Krakow. Between 16th and 26th of May 2012, a group of participants under the supervision of Jacek Smolicki and Alberto Frigo worked on a movie inspired by the cinematic masterpiece of constructivism - Dz.Vertov's Man with a Movie Camera. the idea was to use the variety of modern and affordable tools such as compact cameras and mobile phones to portray a life of the city - in this case Krakow - from the dawn to dusk. Four time periods were defined: 8-12,12-16,16-20 and 20-24. After four days of exploring the city and constructing the datebase that consisted of 2, 4, 8 and 16 second clips, the group moved on to the second stage of the workshop which was a collective montage. Daniel Wilson and Marzena Kawa joined the team of supervisors and after four days of discussions and revision of the database content, the movie was ready for the screening. The premiere of the movie entitled Women and Men with a Mobile Camera, took place in Bunkier Sztuki in Krakow on the 26th of May and was accompanied by the live improvisation conducted by four musicians: Martyna Poznanska - samples and electroacoustic soundscapes, Maciej Kozlowski - guitar, Roman Glowacki - saxophone and Jacek Smolicki - guitar Here you can watch the result of the performance.
The group of women and men with a mobile camera consisted of: