In recent news: Silent Film Legend F.W. Murnau’s head has been stolen. Not cool, satanists. I have a soft spot for Murnau. Nosferatu provided the horrific backdrop to a particularly debaucherous evening of my adolescence filled with existential questioning and, on a lighter note, Sunrise is one of my favourite films of all times.
In 2011, I had the unique opportunity of spending 3 months in Kassel, Germany as part of an artist’s residency. The idea behind the residency was to produce a work that was somehow about the city. In researching Kassel, I was excited to learn that one of its most famous inhabitants was Murnau who spent some formative years in the city between 1892 and 1907. Known as a daydreamer, a young F.W. apparently passed much of his time exploring his surroundings on foot. I decided to do the same, wandering around Kassel absorbing the sights and sounds that might have inspired a budding filmmaker with big dreams and big nightmares. The resulting piece was Traum_a.
With Murnau on my mind this week, I decided to revisit some of the footage I shot while in Kassel and create the first in a series of audiovisual city postcards. These short pieces will follow a haiku format comprised of 3 phrases (5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables), but, self-imposed formal restrictions aside, are just an audiovisual snapshot of a place I’ve had the pleasure of exploring with eyes and ears.