No Kaddish...

The Vacuum Project

Now in its third year, the ongoing U.S. project of Austrian art collective Intro-Graz-Spection continues with „No Kaddish will be said,“ a multi-media event that takes place on Saturday, March 2nd, 2002 at the Lord Mori Gallery in Chinatown, Los Angeles.

Intro-Graz-Spection's Los Angeles series focuses on the transfer mechanisms of cultural imagery using examples of the everyday Pop culture of America. Former events in the series staged at Chinatown’s Black Dragon Society Gallery were Mayflower, a 1999 collaboration of Austrian art collective G.R.A.M., alternative rock band BLOOM 05 and video artist Christian Marczik, and Mayflower 2 - Willkommen Daheim (Welcome Home) in 2000, three videos by Georg Altziebler ('Splinters of an illusion called America'). 

More than ever, Intro-Graz-Spection's new project   grounds itself firmly in the instrument of illusion, Los Angeles, drawing a line between pop-immanent ego presentation and the portrait of a Jewish man who immigrated from Austria. The myth of the celebrated, adored Pop star is interlaced with the story of one who was cast out – two lives, caused by completely different impetus, but leading to the same local target: Los Angeles, i.e. Hollywood, becomes their point of escape at the outer rim of the so-called Western World - a place of temporary security and timeless promise of fame and fortune.

At „No Kaddish will be said,” a concert camouflaged as a Karaoke event (Romanian countertenor Mircea Mihalache will sing songs of the 30ties) becomes the frame for the video film “No Kaddish Will Be Said,“ a documentary by Georg Altziebler.

The video  is a condensation of an almost 8-hour long interview in Los Angeles with Political Scientist and Lawyer Dr. Helmut Bader*, who was born in Graz, Austria, in 1915. The 86-year old’s stories make tangible the exemplary fate of one who was an outcast. His life path cannot be viewed as a straightforward and linear progress that always followed a natural routine, but labyrinthine like a numbers puzzle. He traveled incessantly, not of his own accord, but because of the hostility he encountered as a Jew in the Old World. The film’s title, “No Kaddish Will Be Said,” refers to a poem by German author Heinrich Heine about the outsider position of assimilated European Jews: between all cultures, between religions, between Los Angeles, where Bader lives today, and Ausschwitz, where a large part of his family was murdered. The film’s form follows the content: we only see the face of the man portrayed. It is a face that even without words speaks in a unique way...

"No Kaddish...." will be presented, one time only, at The Lord Mori Gallery in Los Angeles' Chinatown.  The event is supported by the Austrian Ministry of Culture, the Cultural Offices of the County of Styria and the City of Graz, as well as the Austrian Consulate General in Los Angeles.

* Dr. Helmut Bader passed away on March 1, 2002, one day before his film was screened at the Lord Mori Gallery in Los Angeles. Intro-Graz-Spection dedicated this event to him in honor of his life.  
(Intro-Graz-Spection - March 2002)



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