digidope: stoned free


© Wolfgang Herbst
Spring 2018
Vienna/Austria

Object / Installation / Digital Film / Sound

The movie claims to be a drug and plays around with the idiosyncrasies of public relations. A number of staccato like, meaningless phrases are hammered relentlessly into the brain of the keen consumer until he or she is obsessed by only one thought: “stoned free yeah”.

In the lower third of the screen — alluding to the disclaimers of medical advertisements — some sort of instruction leaflet is displayed. On the surface it informs us how to use the movie and warns you in advance of harmful secondary effects but there is also a subtext which is meant to be a subtle critique on the drug policy put forth by the Austrian government and a potshot at the ”true“ power structure of the nation (Kronen Zeitung). Provoking and mostly untrue statements fitting very well into the bulk of fake news that are dominating todays media landscape in an ever increasing way.

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I Needed A Save Place


© Wolfgang Herbst
Summer 2017
Vienna/Austria

Object / Installation
Gallery SUR, Vienna/Austria, 2017

The idea for this work came up, when Donald Trump (the current president of the United States) annunciated, that he wanted to build a fence between the US and Mexico. Here in Europe we have a very similar discussion as a result of a refugee crisis. The pretended goal — of course! — is always an increase of security. But who’s the real beneficial occupant?

Didn’t we hear in the past, that freedom is a reason to fight wars? The economy has to operate in global dimensions without limits, but average people have to live in well defined boundaries? Doesn’t become our security a cage more and more? Aren’t we observed nearly completely? Who is frightening us and what are the reasons? These are some questions I’d like to raise.

Thank you very much for sharing!