Anri Sala and Ari Benjamin Meyers

At 6.00pm on Wednesday 30 May Anri Sala and Ari Benjamin Meyers will discuss their film collaboration, 1395 Days Without Red, with Declan Long, in the Lecture Room at the NCH building, where IMMA are to be temporarily housed for the next while. 1395 Days Without Red is a collaborative film project about the siege of Sarajevo and will be in the Annex space of the NDH site from the 31st of May until the 15th of July. More details as follows from the IMMA website:

Anri Sala’s breathtaking 1395 Days Without Red, 2011, a collaborative film-project between Sala and composer Ari Benjamin Meyers, will be presented in the Annex space at the NCH site. The presentation also includes an exciting new work in response to this space and the musical score from the film.

The siege of Sarajevo lasted 1,395 days. From 1992 to 1996, thousands of citizens had to cross streets threatened by snipers everyday: to go to work, to buy food, to visit a relative. The citizens wore dark colours, for fear of alerting their movements to the snipers watching from the hills above. In Sala’s film an elegant young woman makes her way through an empty city. At every crossing she stops, looks and listens. Should she wait or should she run? Should she wait for others or take the risk on her own? The city is Sarajevo, and the route the woman takes, became known as Sniper Alley during the siege of the city. The woman, played by Spanish actress Maribel Verdú, is reliving the experience of the trauma of the siege. It is her individual journey through the collective memory of the city.

Throughout the siege, the Sarajevo Symphony Orchestra continued to play. In Sala’s film, the orchestra rehearses Tchaikovsky’s 6th symphony, the Pathetique. The musicians stop and start, repeating different sections of the symphony, just as the woman stops and starts in the city. Hearing the music in her head, she finds the courage to carry on.

Born in Tirana, Albanian, in 1974, Anri Sala is one of the most outstanding young artists working today. His works are meditations on slowness in which camera movement is practically non-existent. In contrast with the speed of images in the media, Sala often freezes scenes into still-shots in order to highlight apparently trivial details. Sala has exhibited extensively, including the Tate Gallery, London, 2004; ARC, Musée d’Art moderne de la Ville de Paris, Paris, 2004; Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna, 2003; the Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, 2002; and the Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, 2002. He is the recipient of numerous prizes, including the Young Artist Prize at the 49th Venice Biennale, 2001; the Prix Gilles Dusein, Paris, 2000; the Best Documentary Film Award from the Tirana International Film Festival (TIFF), 2000, and the International Film Festival in Santiago de Compostela, 1999.