Amie Siegel DDR/DDR

Monday, November 15, 2010 - 7:30 pm

Programmed by Amy Kazymerchyk
Amie Siegel in attendance

American artist Amie Siegel continues to probe the psychological architecture of her adopted home, Germany, in her 2008 essay film DDR/DDR (Deutsche Demokratische Republik/ East Germany).  DDR/DDR excavates the psychic trauma and its residual endurance associated with the former socialist state and reunification. The social manifestations of this trauma unfold into “cine-constellations,” a term that refers to Siegel’s search for “more accumulative and architectural modes of structuring films.” In DDR/DDR, the constellation is comprised of German Indian hobbyists, Psychoanalysts, a Stasi surveillance equipment collector, a Stasi spy, and a National Film Production sound recordist.  Their stories enfold around a survey of socialist architecture, Stasi training films, an urban tightrope walker and Siegel’s narrative reflections.

Cinema’s collusion with Stasi surveillance strategy and technology, Communist propaganda, German ethno-mythology, and Psychoanalysis is reflexively embedded within the film’s exposition.  Siegel’s camera and its prying lens figure as variable mechanisms for witnessing and being witnessed–for exposing and being exposed. Situated on both sides of the camera, Siegel implicates herself in her inquiry into the conflation of performance and disclosure, construction and objectivity, submission and omission, memory and history.

DDR/DDR. 2008, 135mins, HD, USA/Germany.


Amie Siegel Artist Talk
Monday November 15th
12.30 pm, SFU World Art Studio at Woodward's
149 West Hastings, entrance through the Cordova courtyard


Amie Siegel uses the cinematic image as material means to a conceptual end.  Her film, video and installation work mines the voyeuristic gaze, direct address and interview to consider how these repetitions shape cultural memory. Siegel’s other works on Germany include Empathy (2003), Berlin Remake (2005), Deathstar / Todesstern (2006), and Deutsche Menschen / German People (2007). Exhibitions and screenings include the 2008 Whitney Biennial; The Walker Arts Centre; Andy Warhol Museum; BFI Southbank; and Austrian Film Museum. Siegel teaches in the Department of Visual and Environmental Studies at Harvard University.