Some Background information:
The Transmission was first performed in the old Umspannwerk Oberschöneweide, Wilhelminenhofstraße, South East Berlin in the Summer of 2014 as part of the Art Festival Kunst am Spreeknie.
It was also performed in the old AEG power station in Schöneweide at the same Festival.
Later on in September 2014 it was performed in BLO Ateliers Lichtenberg as part of the Berlin International Performance Festival.
This Umspannwerk or transformer substation is one of the oldest in Europe. The building now listed was designed by the architect Hans Müller in 1933. The general area of Schöneweide was already famous since the early 1900s as an industrial powerhouse for companies like AEG that manufactured electrical equipement on a huge scale. Many patents being secured by the AEG founder Emil Rathenau from Thomas Edison. Radio research developement and manufacture was also part of the Schöneweide industrial landscape.
Because of Schöneweides connection with the early developement of German radio it was fitting and a privilege to perform the Radio Transmission in some of its listed and iconic buildings.
We are surrounded by technology. Industry and technology has developed so much and so fast since the industrial revolution. We have invented a mechanical universe made in our own image, governed by science and mathematics, where even poetry and music are subservient to order and a formula. But have we as human beings also developed? Can nature be so easy manipulated and defined? We torture our reasoning brains to develope practical applications for our theories in Logic rationalism and analysis, and things that can be weight and measured.
But the human is a strange and complex creature, a being darkly wise and rudely great – a child of nature who refuses to thrive on a formula – a creature whose mind is fit to inhabit two worlds and is dwarfed and distorted if it is confined to one. Nature can not be put in a box and sold.
This transmitter is a device which crosses the divide between science and the imagination, the rational the irrational, the inward the insubstantial. With this instrument, we seek and capture radio waves that have already been sent out into the ether and beyond. We secure and instantly retransmit the waves back out again, so that they can be reheard, in a different time and in a different place.
Some of the distorted sound you hear is ancient, captured from stars and solar dust – there since the beginning......since the birth of the beginning..... the remnants of something that once was...... We torture our reasoning brains to develope practical applications for our theories in Logic rationalism and analysis, and things that can be weight and measured.
Have we finally allowed ourselves to be technologically as well as mentally enslave? Have we been so conditioned that we have forgotten our origins and who we are? Have we lost our sense of joy and spontaneity? Have we lost our way? Have we disconnected the child from the mother......our mother? Have we cut the cord?
Nabelschnur....Kabelschnur. (Nabelschnur - Umbilical cord)
Does the eagle know what is in the pit?
Or wilt thou go ask the mole?
Can wisdom be put in a silver rod?
Or love in a golden bowl?
We have developed this sophisticated metaphysical device which combines science and imagination, the rational and irrational, the inward and the insubstantial.
With this instrument we can travel through space and the realms of perception. We can seek and capture sound and radio waves that have - already been sent out into the ether and cosmos. Waves from nature from human thought from things yet unknown! - We grasp them with this device and instantly re-transmit them back out into the ether, so that you can hear them again as they first sounded. Some of what you hear may be ancient, captured from stars and solar dust, there since the beginning..........since the birth of the beginning. Or.....the reminance of something that once was. Our engineers will guide the device through magnetic field radiation and interference endeavouring to find capture and retain.
... we forget that nature and not our artificial and technological society is humanities ultimate arena.
Nature will claw back it´s own.
Not the benevolent romantic mother nature of Rousseau and Wordsworth but the dark primeval goddess of archaic night. Obliteration, formlessness, dissolution, a return to the eyeless murky womb of nature and the continuum in wind, water, earth and stars.
Text: John Power.
Poem: Thel's motto by William Blake , 1789
also: Camille Paglia, Sexual Personae. 1990
Performance team: Raymond Romanos, Anna Mareike Voss, Grant Price, Merle Vester, Stuart Mc Clean, Karin Schuster - with camera man Roberto Duarte.