Omer Fast

14 May - 22 Jul 2011

© Omer Fast, Nostalgia, 2009. Courtesy ArratiaBeer, Berlin
14 May - 23 July 2011

The first solo exhibition of works by Omer Fast in the Netherlands is comprised of three complex installations. These are the three-part work Nostalgia (2009), with which Fast won the Preis der National-galerie für Junge Kunst in Berlin, the 4-channel work The Casting (2007), that won him the Whitney Museum’s Bucksbaum Award in 2008, and De Grote Boodschap (2007), produced for the Contour video biënnale in Mechelen. In the show Fast demonstrates his fascination with narrative and cinematic constructions, and different forms of documentary and re-enactment.
Omer Fast writes his own scripts and directs and edits his own films. Working with film, video and television material, he looks at how individual and collective histories interact with each other in narrative. The interview functions as a very important form for this, both in terms of construction and as a starting point. Fast repeatedly works with witnesses and their testimonies. Because in their accounts individuals ‘re-enact’ what happened to them, they experience and interpret the events anew. It is precisely at those moments that memory is processed again. Thus Fast is not responding directly to reality, but working with representations and narratives. There is a truth in the telling of personal stories which interests the artist, but he often plays with it to create ambi-guous or self-critical works. In this manner, video and film can not be simply considered as an open ‘factual medium’, but generate space for reflection.
Thematically Omer Fast’s works often articulate the complex relationships between people from different cultures, at moments of tension and interdependence. He is drawn to current topics such as immigration, political refugees, war and community relations as points of departure for his narratives. At the same time Fast provides insight into how the mechanisms of filmmaking and storytelling often influence these narratives and the truth value we attach to them.
Omer Fast’s recent solo exhibitions include the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, the South London Gallery, England, the Kunsthaus Baselland, Switzerland, and the Berkeley Art Museum in California. His work was also to be seen in group exhibitions at the Barbican Art Gallery, England, and in the Liverpool Biennial, England, Manifesta 7, Italy, the Whitney Biennial, NY, Performa Festival, NY, and the Centre Pompidou, France. Presently the artist is working on his first feature film.

The exhibition is made possible with the help of: ifa Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen e.V., Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds, SNS Reaal Fonds, Goethe Institut, Embassy of Israel

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