Conversations at the Edge

The Unstable Object

Posted on | November 19, 2010 | No Comments

Thursday, December 2, 6 p.m. | Daniel Eisenberg in person!

The Unstable Object (Daniel Eisenberg, 2010). Image courtesy the artist.
The Unstable Object (Daniel Eisenberg, 2010). Image courtesy the artist.

“Daniel Eisenberg’s films construct intricate webs of associations and reflections that probe consciousness, memory, and the emotional undercurrents of landscapes.” – Steve Anker

What do a luxury automobile, a wall clock, and a cymbal have in common? Daniel Eisenberg’s latest film, The Unstable Object is an elegant and visually sensual essay on contemporary models of production. Interested in the ways “things” affect both producer and consumer, Eisenberg travels to a state-of-the-art Volkswagen factory in Dresden, Germany, where shoppers look on as their individualized cars are hand-built by high-tech specialists; to Chicago Lighthouse Industries, where blind workers produce wall clocks for federal government offices; and to a deafening cymbal factory in Istanbul, Turkey, where today’s most sought-after cymbals are cast and hammered by hand, exactly as they were 400 years ago. Through a series of sequences sympathetic to each site and subject, The Unstable Object probes the relationships our global economy creates between individuals around the world. This special preview screening will be followed by a book signing for POSTWAR: The Films of Daniel Eisenberg (Black Dog Publishing, 2010), the first major critical study of the SAIC professor’s work. Daniel Eisenberg, 2010, Germany/Turkey/USA, DigiBeta video, ca. 90 min (plus discussion).

DANIEL EISENBERG (1954, Israel) has been making films for the past three decades.  His films and videos examine history, memory, trauma, the contemporary urban environment, and labor, as well as their manifold representation and mediation.  His work has been shown throughout Europe and North America, with exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; the Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley; the American Museum of the Moving Image, New York; De Unie, Rotterdam; and Kino Arsenal, Berlin; and at film festivals in Berlin, Sydney, London, and Jerusalem. Eisenberg has also edited numerous television documentaries, including Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years, and Vietnam: A Television History. Eisenberg has received numerous awards and fellowships, including a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in 1999. His films are in the collections of the Centre Georges Pompidou, the Freunde der Deutschen Kinemathek, and the Australian Film and Television School, among others. He is currently Professor of Film, Video, New Media, and Animation at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

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