THE NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (1968). VIEWING THE SCENE
video projections – site specific, 2016
location: backyard, 23 and 25 Na Stoku Street (the remaining points on the route to be discovered by the Audience)
Horror movie “The Night of the Living Dead” has started the great career of zombie figure in pop culture. The movie its however was a product of counter-culture and mirrored subversive moods of the epoch in which it was created.
It was 1968, man. Everyone had a message” – its director said, George A. Romero, when asked about political message of the movie. Night..- the story of not dead, which come to get the living – have lived to see many interpretations. In this raw, cruel and nihilistic spectacle some could hear the echoes of the war in Vietnam, other could see the critique of racism, or general critique of society founded on exclusion and violence. Romero’s vision was to mirror the spiritual condition of society eaten by a kind of subconscious guilt; society supressing its sins, but fearing they might come back – fearing oneself.
By projecting fragments of the movie Dominik Lejman is interested not so much in horror found in pictures, but more in their political potential. In this meaning for Lejman “a true horror is a fairy tale site-specific”.
Borrowed from Romero “living dead” show up in dark corners of the neighbourhood, seem to come out of bushes and yards. Projecting the movie is projecting imaginations, both in metaphorical and literal meaning. But what is there behind the imaginations, here and now, on Biskupia Górka ? Lejman doesn’t give a straight answer, using – as Romero in 1968 – the ambiguous figure of zombie. Some people fear to come to Biskupia Górka, they say it is a dangerous neighbourhood. On Biskupia Górka, schools playground rests on non-exhumed cementer of former inhabitants. Biskupia Górka is topped with a castle build by Nazis… There are many potential reasons why on Biskupia Górka we could see “living dead”. In each case however, we will see only reflection of our fears – and ourselves.
Dominik Lejman (1969) – a painter, multimedia artist, a graduate of Fine Arts Academy in Gdańsk and Royal College of Arts in London. He leads Painting Studio at University of Arts in Poznań. He has received many awards, among others Passport of POLITYKA magazine. For Lejman the main relation point is still painting, but practiced in a very wide manner. The artist deepens the space of classic painting adding layers of video. He creates movie frescoes and site-specific installations. Even though movies as medium plays an important role in his art, Lejman avoids using traditional screen, opting for rather for public space, space created with painter’s means and reality itself, both in direct and symbolic dimension.