Official Selection for Diagonale 2020 (which was cancelled due to coronavirus)
Here you may read a few afterthoughts on the video.
"...einen traumhaft-trashigen Bilderkosmos" - Michelle Koch, Diagonale
translates to: "a dreamy-trashy picture cosmos"
Holodeck is special to me. It’s a ghetto Viennese fantasy, embedded with motifs from my life. The main theme deals with self-perception and the consequences of escapism. The biggest challenge in making music videos is finding the balance between the music, the video’s concept and the fragile state of the audience’s attention span, all must which come together with a slight wobble. It’s a moving target that must be danced upon, for the video to be able to come across as entertaining.
Being said, Holodeck is not an easy viewing experience. It’s completely insensitive towards epileptics, and the texture of it is horrendous, having been rendered onto magnetic tape by technology from 1993. As if that wasn’t enough, it was further degraded by modified circuitry to create the glitch effects. It’s an experiment, and a main essence of experimentation is failure.
It's most anti-cinematographic. It may be the worst looking video I've ever made, often with inadequate lighting and fixed completely in post. From my cinematographic eye, this video makes me want to vomit. It's subversive to everything I've been taught and what's been expected out of me - especially from a client. It's made on completely scavenged and forgotten equipment.
It isn’t all without purpose though. The main experiment conducted was how to use these glitches and awful textures as a story-telling device, one that brings the topic back around to “my ghetto Viennese fantasy”.
I’ve made it in life. I live in Vienna, Austria, a democratic socialist utopia when compared to America. I live with the world's highest living standards in a royal flat at a fraction of what I was paying when I lived in Los Angeles. But I’m kinda broken. The excitement and sense of adventure has faded, and I walk around with my head down; I don’t really look at people in the eye anymore. I crave escapism often. Not from Vienna, but from who I am and who people perceive me to be on first glance. To lose my face, to become status quo so that I’m not noticed by anyone.
This theme is prevalent in Holodeck. The protagonist isn’t happy so he goes into a virtual reality. He catches a reflection of himself and is reminded of who he is, and he changes his avatar into somebody else. This bliss only lasts until he remembers who he is underneath.
I love Holodeck for this reason, it resonates with me because it’s so niche and tied into where I am in life. I have come to respect that many people cannot connect with it, because the effects are an offense on the senses, or possibly because they could not catch or relate to the dilemma of the protagonist. It’s niche, it’s cryptic and it’s almost everything I wanted it to be.
Creating this video with Wolfgang Möstl was an incredible experience, as always. It led to him inviting me to join Mile Me Deaf on a summer tour, to play bass guitar and simultaneously VJ with some of the same equipment we used on the Holodeck video. The aesthetic of the video truly got married into the music, which attained the ultimate goal of any music video in the first place: to marry an aesthetic to a band's visual identity.
To have Diagonale’s validation and invitation is an utmost honor, I honestly did not think Holodeck would be chosen. I thank you very much and look forward to another year at Diagonale! I would wager that this video will be the only DigiBetaSP/DVCam screening, since I will bypass the DCP and create a tape for the screenings!