Dalibor Knapp: Default Settings: Cinema for Two Viewers
14. 9. 27. 9. 2016
opening: 13. 9. 2016 6pm
curated by: Tomáš Svoboda
TS: I would like to ask you something. You wrote in your text that “more violence is needed for a better world.” Do we need more violence to have a better world? Or is more violence part of a better world?
DK: First, we need to define “better world”. It’s different for everyone, of course. I imagine it to be a world, which is fairer and more solidaristic. I think that a condition for solidarity is the body or its physical experience. I can probably imagine what it’s like to be hungry, how much it hurts when someone falls off stairs or when someone is beat up. But it’s more difficult to relate to images of protesters being dispersed by microwaves, which cause them unbearable heat under their skin or protesters whose inside body organs are set in motion through very strong acoustic instruments. Technology has brought situations that our bodies are not familiar with. So if we want a better world, everyone should first try this violent experience in order to sympathise with others who have been abused with this technology.
TS: You mean, it’s necessary to create some sort of a “violence simulator” that would enable us to go through such an experience? Violence, however, does not have only a physical character. Psychological terror, humiliation, insults, and ignorance are also violent. Do you mean that also?
DK: Perhaps yes, but not a “violence simulator” as a machine, but rather as a principle that will be a part of slot machines, for example. There is no real chance for it to spread other than as a game or entertainment. It’s more complicated with psychological violence, it’s difficult to portray and it’s hardly visible. The impact of mirror neurons that function in physical violence is smaller. I don’t want to, by any means, decrease the importance of psychological violence, but the advantage of the mind is that for millenniums it has basically remained the same, therefore in principle psychological violence does not change and we can work with it. A huge problem will arise when technology will be able to cause what is now unimaginable – new forms of this violence.
TS: Regarding the “simulator”, I meant something like a game, or perhaps an expanded reality. Certainly even psychological violence could be simulated in this way. Another form could also be maybe violence between man and a machine…
DK: Sure, but the violence is never between man and the machine, but between man and that what is behind the machine. But that is nothing extraordinary, after all how many people have problems with their backs or eyes from sitting at a computer?
TS: Yeah, or the psychological terror of Windows crashing… I was thinking more in the terms of the future, as you wrote. The future, still unknown… Do you think this can be provided through visual art? Could art be that “simulator”?
DK: Art can provide it, but the question is – to what extent. Perhaps the knowledge that it is only art and not living reality could flatten it… What do you think?
Tomáš Svoboda, Fabiana Mertová, Fraňo Procházka, Žofie Zajíčková, Jordan Boulet, Jan Tyrpekl, Liu Lin, Maria Sanchez, Anna Kryvenko