Grenzfälle. Dokumentarische Praxis zwischen Film und Literatur bei Merle Kröger und Philip Scheffner

Wolf, Nicole, ed. 2021. Grenzfälle. Dokumentarische Praxis zwischen Film und Literatur bei Merle Kröger und Philip Scheffner. Berlin, Germany: Vorwerk 8. ISBN 9783947238354 [Edited Book]

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Abstract or Description

The long-standing artistic collaboration between Merle Kröger and Philip Scheffner has resulted in a comprehensive body of literary and audiovisual works. At the center of their work is the ongoing confrontation with ghosts of the political past that shape Europe's current border regimes and their structural racism. By expanding conventions of literary political thriller on the one hand and documentary film on the other, they open up new spaces of thought and negotiation for artistic practice and theoretical discourse.

"Grenzfälle" is the first publication on the work of Merle Kröger and Philip Scheffner.

The volume brings different text genres into dialog: with a long conversation about their mode of practice-research, a selection of archive texts as well as academic, essayistic and personal contributions, it sheds light on the processes of creating literary works and films and asks about origins, methods as well as the ethical and political principles of collaboration and the development of innovative self-reflexive formats. Selected archive texts from the 1990s, the period of the artists' group Botschaft e.V. and the collective dogfilm, refer to the early examination of documentary as a political working method and of television as a space for new formats, even before these issues were discussed in the 2000s under the term "documentary turn".

A particular focus of the volume is on Kröger and Scheffner's empirical research. Authorship, conventions of artistic, documentary and academic work, but also the possibilities of political work in general, are fundamentally questioned and their boundaries continuously expanded. An approach that makes their works highly relevant in the context of current discourses on artistic research.

Kröger and Scheffner's simultaneous work on films and books is also characterized by the fact that it cannot be reduced to the division between the cinematic-documentary on the one hand and the fictional-literary on the other. Fiction is negotiated on different levels in cinematic and literary works and is simultaneously a method, in image, sound and word. By recognizing the real possibilities of fiction, but also the violence of, for example, state-imposed fictions, which in turn creates realities, Kröger and Scheffner make an equally challenging, generous and urgent artistic contribution in the context of contemporary debates.

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Edited Book

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Visual Cultures



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Date Deposited:

07 May 2024 08:22

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07 May 2024 08:22


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