Arne Vogelgesang´s project proposal Mirror Stage combines the use of contemporary technologies of human representation through hardware and software interfaces with questions of national identity. By tracing radical political subcultures and their diffusion of propaganda on the internet, Arne Vogelgesang means to draw a virtual landscape of ideological Germany. For him, the ultimately impossible cartography of extremist practices is not much more than the feverish dream of a secret service agent, the eternal man in the middle of constitutional democracy.
“All of this is connected to my broader interest in building material, sensorial environments emulating the experience of “being online“ in a cohabitable performative space.“
Arne Vogelgesang intends to employ face, body and spatial tracking, the mapping of tracked movements on 3D avatars, and speech synthesis in order to appropriate found internet propaganda. The resulting interactive environment, a house of mirrors, takes visitors on a horrific joyride through a virtual extremist Germany. They can identify with this Germany or distance themselves from it, multiply, metamorphose or get lost in a network of representations and identities.
In 2005, Arne Vogelgesang founded internil, a label for contextual and participative work in the fields of theater and performance art. Working with various collaborators, he conceptualizes and stages interdisciplinary performance projects that integrate video and audio compositions and other media such as TV, graffiti, architecture and software-generated material. In the 2013 performance New Love, Arne Vogelgesang, Marina Miller Dessau, Clementine Pohl and Christoph Wirth engaged with the forms, language and economy of the desire for intimacy in the “romantic web”. The project Underground, also with Marina Miller Dessau and Christoph Wirth, deals with reactions to the right-wing German terrorist cell National Socialist Underground in the media and layers contexts, documents and realities in a way that reflects the enduring political and judicial mess surrounding the NSU.
Arne Vogelgesang is an artist living in Berlin. You can browse these and other projects at internil.net.
Photos: Nils Bröer