whatsherface #7: Veronika Burger - even if the lights go out, there is still light.

‘(...) they are almost always thrown around. And even if the don’t fall over right away, then at the end (…) and when the lamps go out in a fight scene, the film is still in bright light (…)’

                                                                                  -Excerpt from an interview with Elisabeth Kemeter

























In mainstream movie productions lamps play not only a significant key role; the staging is a dramatic one. They can be seen as a trigger or as a result of a fight and they keep falling dramatically. 

Two standard lamps, commissioned in 1987 from Elisabeth Kemeter, were intended to be used as set dressing for the James Bond film The Living Daylights. They were completed and delivered but did not appear in the final cut of the film and the original designs no longer exist. Even if the lights go out, there is still light. now tells the story of this commission. The two blue lamps – non-present in the James Bond movie – are reconstructed in a collaborative working process with the Viennese lampshade designer Elisabeth Kemeter. The mechanisms of historiography that are based on inclusion and exclusion are rendered visible and a feminist re-writing negotiated as a recurring and performative act. Furthermore the two blue lamps become leading performers of the video.

Veronika Burger was born in 1981 in Vienna (AT). She studied Fine Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts and the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. Interested in the concepts of authorship, art historian conventions and institutional requirements, Veronika Burger uses several media to discuss these standards. Exhibitions (selection): 2017 Nhà Sàn Collective, Hanoi (VN) / MUSA – Museum auf Abruf, Vienna (AT) / galerie5020, Salzburg (AT) / 2016 International Video Art Festival Now&After, The Darwin Museum, Moskau / Sewon Art Space, Yogyakarta (ID) / Fotogalerie Wien, Vienna (AT) / 2015 Schwarzwaldallee Basel (CH) / PLAN – Raum für Kunst, Hamburg (DE) / Prag Quadriennial of Performance, Design and Space, Prag (CZ) / Selecto Planta Baja, Los Angeles (US) / 2015 Mentoring Program Scholarship for Video- and Media Art and Artist in Residency in Yogyakarta (ID) by The Austrian Federal Chancellery.

More of her work can be seen at veronikaburger.com.