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Kunsthaus Zürich Presents Short Films on the Occasion of Its 100th Birthday
Thilo Hoffmann, 30 seconds, 2009. Video, colour, sound, 7’39’’ © Thilo Hoffmann.

ZURICH.- To celebrate its centenary the Kunsthaus Zürich has commissioned an artist, an advertiser and a film-maker each to create a short film, and thus afford three different perspectives on the Kunsthaus, its staff and its visitors. The films can now be viewed at the museum as well as on the Kunsthaus website and on YouTube.

On 17 April 2010 the Kunsthaus Zürich celebrated its one hundredth birthday. It has chosen a very special way to mark the occasion: film-maker Luc Gut, artist Thilo Hoffmann and creative director Ralf Kostgeld have each prepared a film presentation of the Kunsthaus Zürich and its activities as seen by a professional on the creative scene. The three men were given artistic licence to work as they saw fit, and the result is three films, each roughly seven minutes long, that are in terms of technique and narrative completely different.

The shorts can now be viewed at and on YouTube, and will be run non-stop in the little screening room on the museum’s below-ground level from 20 April to 20 May, and from 31 August to 31 December 2010.

Surrealist Film by Adman Ralf Kostgeld
Ralf Kostgeld was born in Austria and raised in St. Gallen, where he was trained in graphic design as a student at the School of Commercial Arts. From 1992 to 2009, following post-graduate study in New York and San Francisco, he worked as art director, conceptor and creative director at various agencies, most recently at Publicis. He has been a freelance creative director in the advertising industry since 2009. Kostgeld, who has worked for a wide range of clients in the worlds of business and culture, also knows a good deal about cinema, having served for years on the film jury of ADC Schweiz, won the EDI film prize on several occasions, and been the recipient of more than 180 national and international awards at leading festivals. When it comes to the field of applied arts he is most at home doing conceptual work on films and animation.

His contribution, entitled ‘Chez toi’, is intended as an allegory of the consumer’s relationship with art, and demonstrates the value of interaction with as many different artistic forms as possible in order to better understand oneself, and life in general. In Kostgeld’s staging, the enjoyment of art is taken to its literal extreme as a couple at the restaurant ‘Chez toi’ sample the brains of various artists. Produced by Pumpkin Film AG, the film features a surrealist narrative with a hint of Buñuel.

Young Film-Maker Luc Gut Takes Us to a Virtual Museum
Luc Gut, a young video and sound artist from Zurich, is enrolled in the media arts programme at the Zurich University of the Arts after beginning his studies in graphic arts at the École d’art de Lausanne. In his work Gut typically features custom-made electronic soundtracks and precisely synchronized images, for he sets every bit as much store by the audio component of his pieces as by the video.

Gut’s ‘1 km Hardbrücke’ (2008) attracted considerable attention and was shown at many national and international film festivals. ‘Takt Film’, meanwhile, a short clip, took both the first prize and the audience prize at the Swiss Young People’s Film Festival.

Gut has taken care that his film for the centenary be innovative and entertaining, that its uniform style and special atmosphere at once convince its audience and whet their appetite for art and a visit to the Kunsthaus. His film takes viewers into a virtual museum, its rooms white and empty. The young people who appear in these rooms, however, are dressed in bright colours; at first they move only minimally, like robots, without focus and looking past one another. And yet something seems to be challenging them to think, and to take notice of each other. Their voices are distorted, overlaid with echo effects, the whole underpinned with a hypnotic, nearly monotonous sound, video and audio melting into one.

Artist Thilo Hoffmann Directs 30-Second Spots
Thilo Hoffmann was enrolled in architecture at ETH Zurich, art history at Sotheby’s Educational Department in London and postgraduate studies at Manchester University, where he earned a Master of Arts. Hoffmann has a wide range of experience, having worked in various galleries, as artist and curator for the Swissair exhibition ‘Art in the Air’, co-curator of the Austrian pavilion at the Venice Biennale and creator of a film series for the New York MoMA, among other things.

Hoffmann allowed Kunsthaus staff to produce their own 30-second film; there were no other stipulations besides length. He provided participating curators, guards, librarians and technicians with advice, did the camera work and put the film portraits together. Finally, he post-produced and cut the films in his studio, and assembled ten of them into a continuous whole.

Kunsthaus Zürich | 100th Birthday | Short Films | Thilo Hoffmann |

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