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Lasse lau
Stem - Sound from the Tropical
Experimental video, Documentary / instal | hdv | color | 33'25'' | Denmark | 2017
In the middle of Lisbon between Avenue Liberdade and the Natural History Museum lays a little gem of a garden, The Jardim Botânico da Universidade de Lisboa. It was inaugurated in 1873. The garden’s crown jewel is its subtropical collections which has a unique microclimate that enables unique tropical plants to survive. STEM is a film about the migration of plants and the beginning of botanical gardens decay. Years of neglects of the Lisbon University Garden have created a romantic environment where the garden is growing wild. The film investigates the displacement in migration and morphology of plants. And investigates some of the post-colonial environmental ramifications of transfer into new subjectivities of the"other." The film came together as is a collaboration between the filmmaker and the German sound artist Max Schneider. Together they traveled Brazil to sound record 17 unique plants. The film features an interview with professor James Clifford, author of "The Predicament of Culture: Twentieth-Century Ethnography, Literature, and Art" (1988), "Routes: Travel and Translation in the Late 20th Century" (1997), and Returns: Becoming Indigenous in the Twenty First Century" (2013).
Lasse Lau, born in Denmark in 1974, is a filmmaker, a video artist, and the winner of the Nordic:Dox Award 2018 for his film Lykkelænder. He studied at the Media Art Department at Funen Art Academy in Denmark, at the Hochschule der Künste in Berlin, and at the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program in New York. His films deal with socio-economic issues, the negotiation of conflicts and the notion of space through the language of film. Lau seeks to utilize aesthetics as a framework that can open dialogical paths. The artist’s work was completed by Max Schneider, sound art teacher at the Hochschule für Grafik und Buchkunst Leipzig, and founding member of the sound design agency Aconica. As a freelance sound designer, Schneider works for contemporary artists and experimental filmmakers, festival producer and curator. His work today focuses on sound design methodology at the heart of applied functional sound design production. Lasse Lau has exhibited in a wide range of museums and galleries including Westfälischer Kunstverein (Münster, Germany), Hamburger Bahnhof (Berlin, Germany), Aarhus Art Museum (Aarhus, Denmark), Brandts Klædefabrik (Odense, Denmark), Museum of Contemporary Art (Zagreb, Croatia), the Turin Biennial of Contemporary Art (Turin, Italy), Contemporary Museum (Baltimore, USA) and MoMA PS1 (New York, USA). Co-founder of Kran Film Collective and member of the Editorial Selection Board at the Danish Film Institute Video Workshop 2001-02, he also works with New York based artist group Camel Collective.