text was printed originaly in Polish: Konrad Chmielecki, Podróże do krainy obrazów albo „wideo-tożsamości” Michała Brzezińskiego w: Opcje 2 (75) 2009
Michał Brzeziński (born in 1975) is an artist whose education in the field of culture studies influences his understanding of video art and marks it with the elements of theoretical discourse. For that reason, his video, following the works of Mirosław Rogala or Wim Wenders, can be seen as a kind of theorizing about the role of the media in contemporary culture. The aesthetics of Brzeziński’s works is based on three strategies of constructing images. Namely, direct cinema, found footage and closed-eye vision, which all relate to the styles of filming and creating the particular mise-en-scene. Direct cinema has roots in documentaries and is concerned with “capturing reality”. Found footage, makes use of the readymade materials and closed-eye vision, the concept coined by Stan Brakhage, is a kind of inner, mental and spiritual vision. Therefore, Brzeziński’s AV 60′ turns into a journey leading across the above dimensions of motion pictures. Starting from the abstract “inner visions”, the spectator travels through the images existing in the various types of the audiovisual media, up to the heart of reality recorded with a digital camera. Formally and ideologically, the road marked out by Brzeziński always runs outwards – from the inner world to the outside reality, from the source to the infinity. n this way, Brzeziński’s concept of “video identity” is born. It is here understood as a set of information processed in the mind of the artist – the observer of reality, and received by the viewer – the addressee of the artist’s message. Hence, “video identities” are to some extent a form of selfnarration generated by Brzeziński in his process of filmmaking, observing the world through the lens of digital camera, falling under the influence of the audiovisual media and personal “inner visions”. Such process of formal development to be noticed in Brzeziński’s works can be summarized in the following way. Brzeziński’s projects focus on the subjects of contemporary, postmodern culture who are in the constant search of information, meanings or pleasure provided by the visual and audiovisual media, such as photography, film, video, TV and the Internet. Brzeziński’s art is situated in this vast area and, therefore, touches upon the problems of a man struggling with reality as presented by the media.