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Joachim Koester, I myself am only a receiving apparatus, 2010, still from a black-and-white film in 16 mm, 3 minutes 33 seconds.

Joachim Koester

Jan Mot

Joachim Koester, I myself am only a receiving apparatus, 2010, still from a black-and-white film in 16 mm, 3 minutes 33 seconds.

Past the gallery door, and then past the heavy curtains keeping the gallery’s main room in darkness, a small screen hung in the center of the space; on it, the New York–based Danish artist Joachim Koester’s most recent 16-mm film, I myself am only a receiving apparatus, 2010, was projected. The voluptuous black-and-white imagery is not accompanied by any sound track. We see a man, vaguely hippieish in appearance, whose head is nodding impassively. He enters and exits the frame slowly, fluidly, animated only by this simple and regular movement, with no other apparent intention but to occupy the premises. And indeed the premises, which are all we see in some shots, are intriguing: They consist of a mysterious interior, all angles and folds, like one of the sets for The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari; little by little we may realize that this is Kurt Schwitters’s Merzbau, 1923–43, as

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