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Actual/Virtual Realities: Harun Farocki’s Parallel & Related Visions

Actual/Virtual Realities: Harun Farocki’s Parallel & Related Visions

Parallel (2012-14), by Harun Farocki

Actual/Virtual Realities: Harun Farocki’s Parallel & Related Visions

Sunday, June 26, 2022, 7:30pm

At 2220 Arts + Archives, 2220 W. Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles CA

Tickets: $12 general, $8 students/seniors, free for Filmforum members

In his groundbreaking four-part work Parallel (2012-14), Harun Farocki explores the realm of video game design, particularly in its conception and creation of virtual worlds.  With his characteristically probing, philosophical perspective, Farocki reveals and ponders the myriad ways in which these designed environments connect to or depart from our own individual and collective understanding of the actual world we inhabit.  Through Farocki’s lens, video game design, as a practice of digital cosmogony, reveals itself as both a tool of the imagination and, inevitably, a mirror of our own self-awareness and self-image, defined as much by limits as it is by liberation.

This program will feature all four parts of Farocki’s masterful essay work, each section paired with a film by a contemporary artist which explores similar themes in a variety of ways, with an emphasis on the spatialization of collective/personal memory and emotional world-building.  Employing varying technologies to approach their subject matter, these films will uncover fresh points of resonance with Farocki’s illuminating ideas, which still carry an ever-relevant visionary insight. (Mark Toscano)

Featuring work by Jacolby Satterwhite, Karolina Głusiec, Ted Wiggin, and more TBA.

total = 74.5m

Program and notes by Mark Toscano. Parallel courtesy of Video Databank. Country Ball courtesy of Electronic Arts Intermix. Velocity, Model Village, and Lo courtesy of the filmmakers.

Parallel I

(2012) by Harun Farocki, Germany, digital, color, sound, 16m

On the construction of landscape and natural features, and the exploration of the grey area between subjective vision and supposedly objective reality. 3D seemingly overtakes 2D in its attempts to connect more intimately with the physical world.


(2012) by Karolina Głusiec, UK/Poland, 16mm/digital, bw, sound, 6m

The evanescence and singular subjectivity of memory collides with refuting physical evidence in the form of drawings, which are neither evidence, nor merely drawings. The objective world, rendered from observation and interpretation, falls literally flat under scrutiny.

Parallel II

(2014) by Harun Farocki, Germany, digital, color, sound, 8.5m

On the idea of the universe as theoretically limitless but intrinsically limited. In either case, the concept of the frontier can be confusing.

Model Village

(2014) by Hayoun Kwon, South Korea/France, digital, color, sound, 9.5m Even if a construction is a simulation, a literally empty gesture of pseudo-presence, it's still a construction nevertheless.

Parallel III

(2014) by Harun Farocki, Germany, digital, color, sound, 7.5m

On the revelation of traversable space as a three-dimensional backdrop representing a world that is fixed, bounded, and idealized; setting as an imperfect extrapolation of memory and desire.

Country Ball

1989-2012 (2012) by Jacolby Satterwhite, US, digital, color, sound, 12.5m

A mother's drawings and a family home video provide the essential architecture for a vivid, three- dimensional phantasmagoria of personal and familial memory, experience, and emotion.

Parallel IV

(2014) by Harun Farocki, Germany, digital, color, sound, 11.5m

On the interaction of characters with each other, and in relation to their surrounding environments. As we embody them, endless and never-imagined narratives both mythic and banal can be explored.


(2017) by Ted Wiggin, US, digital, color, sound, 3m

Protagonists act out a fable in an ever-changing relationship to each other, as well as to the virtual environment that contains them. Through some miracle, 2D incorporates the rules of 3D and reimagines them for its own purposes.