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selected projects | Naked Eye




Naked Eye

audio- visual installation

Idea, Concept, Artwork: Sylvia Eckermann

Sound architecture: Peter Szely

Kunstraum Bernsteiner

01.12.2010. — 25.01.2011





Naked Eye


audio-visual installation


In her solo show Naked Eye at the Kunstraum Bernsteiner, Sylvia Eckermann applies the artistic media of (moving) image, colour, installation, and text as a means to resolve the all too familiar categories of the narrative of the exhibition. The White Cube of the Viennese exhibition space is transformed into the setting of a reflection in the double meaning of the word: Reflecting materials charged with artistic purport become the agents of an investigation into the subtle relations between the codes of artistic expression. In its material and immaterial presence, her work critically addresses both the ideas of the autonomy and the elusiveness of the artwork. Deliberately moving between the layers of her material, linguistic, visual and tonal objects ( the sound layer is a composition by szely) and their installation, Eckermann consequently refuses to pre-define a conceptual interpretation of her work. Thus, Naked Eye can be seen as an artistic method of interrogation, which appropriates or rather fuses objects and light into multifarious but yet subjective strata of visibility. The narrative of the exhibition as the traditional textual ambience of art is thereby split into fluid and fleeting perceptions that nonetheless manifest the arts’ inherent potential to inspire the individual viewer. The “speech” in Alfred Adler’s* quote that forms the textual element in Eckermann’s show could be reinterpreted in terms of art: “If what the patient says seems ambiguous and confusing, close your ears and open your eyes wide. Watch him closely when he talks and you will understand exactly what he does not tell you.”

© Gerald Nestler, artist and researcher

* Alfred Adler (1870-1937) was the founder of the school of individual psychology. With Sigmund Freud and others, he was among the co-founders of the psychoanalytic movement as a core member of the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society. He was the first major figure to break away from psychoanalysis to form an independent school of psychotherapy and personality theory (from:


Naked Eye
- sonic layer.

Die klangliche Komponenten der audio-visuellen Rauminstallation Naked Eye bilden, in Relation zu den Projektions Panelen, 10 abstrakte Klänge , Klangereignisse und Entwicklungen, in unterschiedlicher Länge ( zwischen 3 und 252 Sekunden). Auch sind die Pausen, die Perioden der Stille, bevor sich das Klangereigniss wiederholt unterschiedlich lang (zwischen 180 und 600 Sekunden). So ensteht ein Klangbild, das sich stetig ändert und sich immer wieder neu konfiguriert, und somit die zeitliche Struktur des Erklingens dieser 10 Klangereignisse endlos variiert.

Weiters liegt über dieser Partitur des Klanges eine weitere Ebene, die der Klangarchitektur: Mittels 5 Matrix Verschaltungen wird der Sound an die im Raum, gegenüber liegend zu den Projektionsflächen, installierte 5.1 Soundanlage verteilt. Diese Klangbewegungen wiederholen sich alle 16 minuten von Neuem. So ensteht ein Raum-Rhytmus-Pattern, der Raum beginnt zu atmen.


Absichtlich sind die Lautsprecher im Raum sehr bodennah installiert (50 cm über den Boden) und stehen so im Gegensatz zu den Projektions-Panelen an der gegenüberliegenden Wand. Der Klang füllt den Raum von unten, ein Klangteppich entsteht, der sich im Raum ausbreitet.


Die visuelle und die klangliche Ebene der Installation stehen in keinem direkten Zusammenhang. Sie werden vollig unabhängig von einander gesteuert, jede Ebene existiert für sich selbst, sie sind auch in der Zeitarchitektur des Auftretetens der visuellen und klanglichen Ereignisse nicht aufeinander abgestimmt.


Die zu hörende Komposition ist keineswegs als "Vertonung der Bilderwelten" zu verstehen, sie ist eine in sich geschlossene autarke Ebene. Der Besucher ist es der die beiden Ebenen miteinander verknüpft. Eine zufällig auftretende Korrellation zwischen Bild und Ton ( z.b.:eine Projektion ändert sich , ein Klangereigniss beginnt) genügt um diese voneinander unabhängigen Ebenen zu verknüpfen.





aesthetics is politics / dream a dreamer’s dream

experimental film, video art, electronic art, film-film, video installation, painting, electronic painting…there are heaps more, a never ending row of vague definitions of what the arts are doing these days. well - are they doing anything? i mean in terms of relevance for the world, for the societies, for the environment, for the human race, for all those wonderful things that go beyond human existence? i mean non-human beings, plants, animals, well – spirits, and all of those unnamable things that share the world with us. l’art pour l’art? humans for humans? ain’t we
beautiful? us! me! under the grip of philosophy we are, under the theory - our little theory of the perception of the world. our! who makes the theory? do we? vanity the picture talks. it talks more than ever before. we think that all of those who lived before us saw and knew less in comparison to us. surely everybody believed so of their own times. image pollution – why add?


naked eye shows why. it combines all the genres listed in the first sentence. digital dream world, yes - except in this case it is the beholder who creates the images. sylvia eckermann offers. what a selection! szely’s music compliments it – more – it enhances it and nonetheless stands for itself. naked eye is art at its best: it doesn’t explain anything, it does not even tell a story; it will tell many stories in your brain - your stories. it does what the arts are meant to be doing: it draws you in, it makes you feel, it unites and does not separate what always has been one and was falsely set apart since the enlightenment: reason and feeling. naked eye lets you dream – not the way we’ve been taught to through the picture’s supremacy, no, it lets you dream a dream you surely have never had.

© edgar honetschläger, filmmaker/artist


Das Projekt wurde unterstützt von:


Speziellen Dank an: Bela Eckermann, Oliver Irschitz, Gerald Nestler, Michael Seidl, Ricarda Denzer, Susanne Schuda

und Alois Bernsteiner.

Video Credits: Michael Goldgruber