JLB Perfect Guest 1989

JLB Perfect Guest 2 within the sculpture JLB Perfect Guest


TV-sculpture: CRT, rack, cables VS single-channel video (Umatic), 5:44 minutes

Annual exhibition

Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf

In his video, Bielicky focuses on the presentation technique of James Lee Byars, who in his silent performances sometimes appeared dressed entirely in gold. Bielicky slows down the self-filmed video footage of a performance by Byars in Frechen near Cologne and waives any cut and any further processing of the documentary. The video technique in this case is the void that fills the TV sculpture again. With the arrangement of four televisions, each rotated by 90 degrees Bielicky produces the material prototype for his own video work "Perpetuum Mobile II" (also 1989) - a single-channel video that will feature numerous video sculptures as screen content from this year ("Images Du Futur", "Flussers Fluss", etc.).


Michael Bielicky - JLB/Perfect Guest - 1989

In 1986 »Perpetuum Mobile« was one of Michael Bielicky’s first video works produced in Düsseldorf. Bielicky tried to reinvent his artistic practice along every major technical cornerstone, starting with Stop Motion, via U-MaticTime base correction with DOC (Drop-out compensator) to GPS, the Internet and real time data and provoked and documented the aesthetic errors of the specter in the machine, in parallel and in contradiction to the on-going technical refinement process of the media industry.

In the 1980s he developed techniques to creatively misuse the first digital video editing machines to alter, distort and rearrange his video material, akin to his mentor Nam June Paik's debut exhibition in 1963, where Paik used magnets to distort his own television-set-based exhibits. Works like Four Seasons (1984), Circulus Viciosus (1985) and Paik-Hat (1986) are disturbing linear narrative traditions through cutting techniques and stop motion alone, whereas Perpetuum Mobile (1986), Next Year in Jerusalem (1988) and Golem is Alive (1989) introduce digital editing techniques to create videos, that appear to be haunted by the specters of early East European media culture. In 1989, the same year Golem is Alive is released, Michael Bielicky expands the two-dimensional screen into the exhibition space.