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MNEMOSYNE (2007, PAL DV, 14,28′)

Music: Artur Zagajewski

“Mnemosyne”. This film is not typical for Michal Brzezinski’s artistic works. Painterly, plastic, it moves in the circle of veiled signs and ambiguous symbols. The image is elusive, avoids easy interpretation. The title recalls the mythological goddess of memory, daughter of Uranus and Gaea, mother of the nine Muses.

“Mnemosyne” is an attempt to get to subconsciousness, to memory. The artist puts a question if it is possible to move outside the realm of signs, and if video can get into the sphere of subconsciousness and images generated by it without manipulating what is real, at the same time having an effect on the viewer by the means of pure language of the medium – image and sound. Brzezinski’s video is an attempt to render a state experienced in meditation, where a man reaches beyond his individual existence. There are no divisions – spirit, memory, matter blend in one. What makes “Mnemosyne” different from other contemplative works is that this film is not the image of a meditating artist, but the image for meditation. It equally affects the artist and the recipient of art.

Michal Brzezinski is a unique artist on the contemporary video scene. He does not move in the circle of fashionable issues, does not take part in popular discourses. He is a graduate of culture studies at the University of Lódz; thus a theoretician. For him, theory is extremely important. Through the medium of film he engages in a direct dialogue with a viewer and sets to redefine the video language of the digital age.

Metaartistic issues are just one of the many fields of Brzezinski’s artistic activity. By the means of electronic media he tries to reconstruct the “I” of the disintegrating subject. Here he does not stop at a fragment, but consistently examines the sources of contemporary identities. He moves from the screen to the body, then to the mind and eye; he searches cultural, religious and social contexts and reaches beyond them. He is concerned with the spirituality of a contemporary man and its position in the cacophony of images.

“Mnemosyne” is an attempt to get into the sphere of pure memory, the domain of the goddess Mnemosyne. The space appears here as a revived memory, animated thanks to the specificity of the used medium.

(Agnieszka Kulazinska)


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