PRINT September 2017


Harun Farocki’s final project

Harun Farocki, Parallel I, 2012, two-channel HD video, color, sound, 16 minutes.

Where does the wind come from? From the trees.

How did the wind begin? Because the branches move.

Do the branches make the wind? Yes.

But how do the branches move? Because of the wind.

—Jean Piaget, The Child’s Conception of Physical Causality (1930)

SOME TWO YEARS before he died, Harun Farocki released the first installment of Parallel I–IV, 2012–14, the four-part film cycle that was to become his last major work. Whereas many of Farocki’s films explored polemical images of technology and violence—from the flying smart bombs that repeatedly appear in Eye/Machine I–III, 2000–2003, to the uniformed soldiers totally disoriented behind their VR goggles in Serious Games (I–IV), 2009–10—Parallel exhibits a calculated restraint, refusing dramatic events in favor of an exploration of the structure and boundaries of the virtual spaces in which we increasingly dwell.


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