Marius Schmidt
Dear Max Planck Society,…

This is the story of Stefan. He imagines trees to be antennas of an extra-terrestrial race, which transmits signals into deep space. For the rest of mankind, he illustrates his idea with a large group of notes, sketches and photography. This documentary material forms a narrative skeleton through which Stefan’s psychosis/ special point of view can be shared and studied. The material leads into the story of a young man who turns himself into a schizophrenic imagination: He believes the patterns of tree crowns to be antennas of an alien conspiracy and tries to prove this perspective. His evidences include diaries and sketches, photographs and video recordings that illustrate more his psychosis as they possess scientific validity. At the climax of his paranoia, he sends the collected records as a legacy to the Max Planck Society in Munich. He is convinced that he will soon be found by the aliens and escapes in this way from the story. What remains is a package of over 150 individual parts : list , photographs, video tapes and CDs. The material in this mailing was realised as a multi-media installation as well as in a publication. It offers the viewer a fragmentary pattern of subjective impressions. These documents allow the viewer to track the path of the protagonist in the narrative psychosis over several axes. The explanations of the protagonist oscillate between physical half- truths and aesthetic surfaces. Do not apply scientific strategies of artistic fields, but in reverse make physical explanation models represented through artistic strategies . This material does not count as a measure of scientific verifiability. The only relevant size of this design is the head of his own protagonists.

Published by AKV Berlin
ISBN: 978-3-00-039555-0
19×29 cm, 158 pp, full-color laser, perfectbound, 2012
Edition of 440 copies
19€ (26$)

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Marius Schmidt’s work often contains of material collections and documents that produce an extended form of narration. Characters, settings and stories are created through this material and along the aesthetical guidelines of the social and institutional surrounding of characters and plot. This also contains strategies of fake and imitation to create dialogs and action in contemporary ways of communication e.g. in email correspondences or bureaucratic paperwork. The examination of narrative techniques in various forms has influenced his work heavily. This means the exclusive use of documents, papers and props to convey a dramaturgy associated figures, including also the examination of fake and imitation strategies in art. The dramaturgy in his work is not constituted by dialogue and action of characters, but the pictural world surrounding them, for example imagery narrative conventions and idiosyncrasies of design. His interest relates primarily to limitations of communication and those situations in which the individual in the process of communication gets mirrored back on himself. Marius Schmidt lives and works in Berlin.

In 2008 a publishing house with an official surface was founded, AKV Berlin Publishing House. Released publications have included the following themes: tests concerning the gap between image and text, experimental journalism, urban semiotics, practices of appropriation of space, investigative documentations and arguments with archives and biographies. AKV is of the opinion that the role or identity of the author is influential in how text and image are perceived. The publications have been produced by the following: anonymously working authors author-groups or collectives authors who publish under their civil name. The publishing house welcomes experimental author-concepts, which will interrogate the potential roles of the originator. Through rearrangements within the author-publisher-structure, undiscovered latitudes and narrations as well as unproven connections between text and image can be generated. Currently AKV includes four representatives who appear sporadically before the public to present recent publications, to enrich them with amplifying material and/or to establish relationships between publications. Programming includes projects beyond publishing to include performative lectures and experimental exhibitions. Presentations are held in private and public contexts and serve as a vehicle for debates. AKV is independently run; all profits feed directly back into current production. Berlin 2011.

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