Ernste Spiele / Serious Games

Artist:Harun Farocki
Year: 2014
Keyword:Exhibition Graphics, Moving Image, Visual Identity
Institution:Hamburger Bahnhof - Museum für Gegenwart

In the four video projections Serious Games, Farocki examines the use of computer game technologies in the training of American soldiers. We see young recruits at the screen engaging in simulated combat training, for example, which barely differs from games produced for entertainment. The series thus depicts how our collective imagination of war is being reshaped by the cinema and increasingly by virtual worlds.
Images of war have been one of Farocki’s recurring subjects. Serious Games is prefaced by a remastered, digital version of his seminal film Inextinguishable Fire from 1969, a formally stringent essay on the Vietnam War which prefigures many of his later thematic preoccupations and film styles. In the two-channel work Interface from 1995 the artist reflects on his own process and takes the step from producing films for the cinema or television towards video installation in the gallery.

Exhibition photography by Frank Höhle