Felix Stephan Huber :: Reality Check One :: multi media installation ZKM Projektraum Medienmuseum :: 22.3. - 5.5. 14.00
Alexanderplatz in Berlin with its pedestrian area, its sparse green areas bordered by concrete slabs and desolate underpass is the scene of the action in Reality Check One. The installation combines images of the real place with a production of it – in the guise of a computer game. Using existing programs that serve to build virtual computer game environments Huber has created an environment in which a detailed copy of the Alexanderplatz is produced with the help of 3D animations. Unlike commercial computer games the players do not occupy a fantasy world but an almost perfect copy of the real place. The virtual world does not become a substitute, does not serve as a means of escape from reality but copies the desolation of today’s urban centers.
The player enters this virtual environment via a games console by selecting an avatar and thus also comes into contact with other virtual representatives who are at the scene. The square is populated with various figures which we know in part from the world of TV and computer games, such as Spiderman, Lara Croft or the figure of Trinity from the movie The Matrix. Through his actions and movements the player is able to determine the course of the action. By moving towards the figures, he activates existing dialog sequences that question the shifts of reality between the real world and the virtual world of computer games. Found footage material from movies such as Matrix, Thron, Blade Runner or Ghost in the Shell is featured in the conversations by the ready-made figures. The player is also able to observe the figures' stories and actions, to follow their conversations, or to enter into dialog with them himself.
Video clips and photographs of the real place and an artificial computer-generated world are merged with one another. The visitor is confronted with the self-same place at various levels. This constant alternation between real and virtual world, between real body and virtual avatar throws up questions about our own identity, and our own position in an increasingly changing and ever more complex world.
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Felix Stephan Huber
born 1957 in Zürich, lives and works in Berlin, Solo exhibitions (selection): 2001 Galerie Michael Zink, München; 2000 Galerie Otto Schweins, Köln; 1999 Kunstmuseum Solothurn/Kunstverein Heilbronn, Städtische Galerie Nordhorn, Nordhorn, Galerie Peter Kilchmann, Zürich; Group exhibitions (selection): 2000/1999 Rewind to the Future, Neuer Berliner Kunstverein und Bonner Kunstverein; 1999 Moving Images, Galerie für zeitgenössische Kunst, Leipzig; 1997 documenta X, Kassel; 1995 Mapping, American Fine Arts, New York; Fotografie nach der Fotografie, Siemens Kulturprogramm München
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